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If you have a disability, your employer does NOT have to pay you minimum wage.

Posted by on Jun. 25, 2013 at 2:01 PM
  • 14 Replies

Honestly, I never even heard of this before today. A friend on FB posted an article about Goodwill reducing their disabled workers pay below minimum wage. The article had a link to the federal law which allows this practice. I am repulsed by the thought of any company taking advantage of the disabled in this way. 


"U.S. Department of Labor 

Wage and Hour Division 

(Revised July 2008) 

Fact Sheet #39: The Employment of Workers with Disabilities at Special 

Minimum Wages 

This fact sheet provides general information concerning the application of section 14(c) of the Fair Labor 

Standards Act (FLSA). 

Characteristics 

Section 14(c) of the FLSA authorizes employers, after receiving a certificate from the Wage and Hour 

Division, to pay special minimum wages- wages less than the Federal minimum wage - to workers who have 

disabilities for the work being performed. The certificate also allows the payment of wages that are less than the 

prevailing wage to workers who have disabilities for the work being performed on contracts subject to the 

McNamara-O'Hara Service Contract Act (SCA) and the Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act (PCA). "

by on Jun. 25, 2013 at 2:01 PM
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Replies (1-10):
lisairv
by Silver Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 2:03 PM

I used to work for a company that was a workplace for mentally impaired people. They made literally pennies. I thought it was very sad. 

Andylund
by Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 2:03 PM
I worked with people who had disabilitys and they were paid a lot less. It made me sad cuz they had to work so much harder then others did.
autiemama516
by Bronze Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 3:23 PM

My sister is mentally challenged and works in a workshop for disabled people. She works 5 hours a day 4 days a week and brings home 30 dollars per week. At first I felt bad for her and thought it was slave labor. I have changed my tune a bit because if she made minimum wage she might have to pay full amount for her housing and lose her foodstamps. She would never be able to completely support herself on her own. She is learning social skills along with counting and learning to sort different products. It is more like a day program that keeps her mind occupied and making friends. I do see what you are saying OP. In many cases private companies are hiring these people to pay a subpar wage. It is sad.

Momofmenagerie
by on Jun. 25, 2013 at 3:50 PM
2 moms liked this
This is why I don't " Give it to Goodwill" I give to organizations that I've researched and know exactly who they are helping, if actual job skills or items are being given directly to someone in need.

How many times have you walked into I goodwill store and actually saw a developmentally disabled or a person in a wheelchair in the store, working ? Or even manning the donation trucks?
No, they get to sort stuff! How helpful as a job skill! The teenagers man the registers , typical adults and teens are one the floor.... No one disabled! Even thier career centers are not geared toward the disabled. They leave a filthy taste in my mouth.
mommytoeandb
by Gold Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 4:33 PM

This is not a new practice.  Honestly, I don't know how to feel about it.  Like a PP mentioned, paying more might mean a loss in benefits.  And, many people like having something to do and the sense of accomplishment.  

FIL was handicapped due to polio, but he went to college and worked FT as an engineer.  

Sanctimommy
by Platinum Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 5:04 PM

But how would he feel if his pay had dropped to pennies per hour while his coworkers were paid normally?


Quoting mommytoeandb:

This is not a new practice.  Honestly, I don't know how to feel about it.  Like a PP mentioned, paying more might mean a loss in benefits.  And, many people like having something to do and the sense of accomplishment.  

FIL was handicapped due to polio, but he went to college and worked FT as an engineer.  


JoshRachelsMAMA
by JRM on Jun. 25, 2013 at 5:11 PM

http://www.cafemom.com/group/99198/forums/read/18683998/Disabled_and_Employed_The_Govt_Says_its_Legal_to_Pay_You_Pennies_on_the_Dollar?last#replies

ditsyjo
by Gold Member on Jun. 25, 2013 at 10:51 PM

I'd like to say I can't imagine a company doing that but...It's really sad they do

TiredbutHappy1
by Bronze Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 8:11 AM
This is why many disabled, myself included, choose to stay on SSI and government help. I have a few deaf friends who are working at my state's school for the deaf. Have the same education and degrees as a hearing teacher but they are paid less. Why bust your ass going to school and not even be able to make what your coworkers make...have to struggle and can't get foodstamps. Better to just stay on SSI.
cmjustice
by Member on Jun. 26, 2013 at 9:22 AM
It's so their benefits aren't disrupted. But, there is a new program with SS that allows you to earn a certain amount of money for a set time period without disrupting benefits. I work with intellectually disabled individuals and a lot of them work in sheltered workshops for the social aspect. At least for the clients I work with, all their set financial needs are met, anything else is for wants and if they have too much left in their bank account they could lose the money they receive for the set needs.
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