The Arc of King County published Some facts about the subminimum wage bill on their advocacy blog today – we say – check their “facts”
The Developmental Disabilities Case load and Cost report has data that is very different than what the Arc of King County reports – take for instance the number of people in supported integrated employment who work and make minimum wage.
DDA reports 8102 people are in the supported integrated employment services program, 3678 (45%) make at least minimum wage, 2294 (28%) make less than minimum wage and 2130 (27%) do not make a wage.
The Arc of King County reports – “Most people served by individual supported employment (the other 92 percent getting DDA employment services) already make minimum wage or better.”
DDA reports that 45% of those in supported integrated employment make minimum wage or better.
The Arc of King County reports “Most people served by individual supported employment (the other 92 percent getting DDA employment services) already make minimum wage or better.”
A national trend? We don’t think so. Of great importance is that there has not been evaluations done for quality of life, meaningful life or job satisfaction/employment rates since some of these states have made changes. As policy makers, one would think that evaluations are important before making decisions.
The Arc of King County reports Vermont closed its sheltered workshops in the 1990s and abolished subminimum wage certificates for people with disabilities. New Hampshire, Maryland and Alaska all passed legislation to abolish subminimum wages for people with disabilities
Review Magical Thinking for some research and insights from New Hampshire and Maine on the issues of eliminating subminimum wage.
From Alaska : While the Employment First movement has picked up in recent years, it does pose new challenges in how providers should tailor job-training services for each person.
One approach has been to give workers a job coach, who goes to work with them during their first month on the job and helps them learn the ropes.
(from 2018 – no evaluation of the outcome of their legislation yet )
These are just a few of the facts that have been checked – there are more.
Please ask The Arc of King County, Representative Noel Frame, Activist Shaun Bickley or any of those organizations on the list of organizations which support this bill, about these discrepancies.
Ask them about the numbers of hours that employees work a week, ask them who pays for the job coaches and supports that will be ongoing for many of the employees to keep their jobs. There are too many unanswered questions or concerns that have not been addressed for this bill to advance without causing more harm than good.