The U.S. Department of Labor has ordered Seneca Re-ad Industries, Inc. of Ohio to pay more than $54,000 in damages and back pay after ruling that the sheltered workshop did not accurately assign sub-minimum wages to three employees with disabilities. The administrative law judge found that Seneca Re-Ad has not proven that the petitioners’ disabilities keep them from accomplishing their work, and that their wages have not been calculated correctly. The original petition was filed by CPSD member organization the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN), Disability Rights Ohio (DRO), the National Federation of the Blind, and the Baltimore Law firm, Brown, Goldstein & Levy, LLP.
Samantha Crane, Legal Director and Director of Public Policy at ASAN, commented to press, “Many people are shocked when they find out that it is legal to pay people with disabilities less than minimum wage. But what’s even more surprising is how rare this type of enforcement action has been until now. We hope this decision puts other workshops on notice that they won’t get away with this sort of exploitation.”
Click here to view the Department of Labor decision.