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Minimum wage and the disabled

May 22, 2011

Turns out there is a second minimum wage — a minimum wage for the disabled (currently, the minimum is effectively zero). And for supposedly moral reasons (reckoned in the absence of the morality of labor itself), some so-called advocates for the disabled are tirelessly working to price them out of the labor market.

This interesting article (the first in a series) in The Columbus Dispatch reviews the issues around wages and the disabled, with views of those interviewed running the gamut from Marxian exploitation theory to free market.

The debate comes down to this: Critics say low wages show that disabled workers are being exploited, but supporters say the pay rates reflect opportunities – that even the most disabled Ohioans are being given a chance to pursue work and build full lives.

I’m with the supporters. And it’s too bad some of those currently unemployed are barred from pursuing work and building full lives due to the belief held by many that to work is to be exploited.

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