I’m sorry he’s sick, but must I give money to him?

DEAR HARRIETTE: A note was posted on my apartment door informing the tenants that one of the longtime handymen in the building is ill and won’t be coming back. The person who posted this notice asked if we, the tenants, would make a donation to help him during his time of need.

Harriette Cole 

I feel sorry for this man, but I never had much interaction with him. I would see him in the morning sometimes when he was collecting the trash or sweeping the hallways. He doesn’t speak English, so we didn’t ever say more than “good morning” or “thank you.”

Should I make a donation even though I hardly spoke to the man?

Helping Hand

DEAR HELPING HAND: In a word — YES! You might be amazed to learn how much this man has done to create comfort for you quietly, behind the scenes.

Too often, handymen, porters, concierges, front desk attendants and other support staff are overlooked. (The holiday season is the one time when tips are expected.)

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