Saturday, July 27, 2013

Caught in the Middle

I buy used clothing.  I only buy clothes when mine get too h  filled with holes and/or stains to be worn outside the house.  Then they become scrub rags and later tomato ties.

When I buy clothing I look first at the DAV Store.  But if they don't have what I need I have two choices.  I can go to a thrift shop which employs no people with disabilities or to Good Will.  The following petition is important to me.  What do you think?  As stated in an earlier post, the situation is complicated.
I worked at Goodwill until they cut my pay so drastically that I was forced to quit. Join me in asking Goodwill to pay disabled workers like me and my husband a living wage.
Sign the Petition
My husband and I are both blind. We've struggled for years to find consistent employment,
even though we both have college degrees. We finally took jobs hanging clothes at
Goodwill for only $3.50 an hour: barely enough to live on, less than minimum wage,
and less than our non-disabled co-workers got paid.
After I had knee surgery last summer I returned to my job to find out my wage had
been lowered to $2.75 an hour.
Working for this little money barely covered my cost of getting to work. I wasn't
making enough money and eventually was forced to quit.
I was shocked to find out that Goodwill exploits a 75-year-old legal loophole to
pay disabled workers like me far less than the minimum wage -- some make as little
as .22 cents an hour.
 I want to be paid a living wage for meaningful work, and other workers like me deserve
the same.
My friends at the Autistic Self Advocacy Network started a petition on asking Goodwill to pay disabled workers like me a living wage. Click here to sign the petition.
Goodwill determines how much they pay disabled workers using "time studies" where
an employee uses a stopwatch to time how long it takes to complete a certain task
and compares it to a non-disabled worker. Time studies were the most stressful part
of my job because I never knew what the task would be and how they would turn out.
My husband even had his wages lowered because of a time study, and they could cut
it again.
My husband and I feel trapped by Goodwill. They know they can pay disabled workers
like us less and less because we have fewer places to go.
Goodwill recently came under scrutiny for this practice of paying disabled people
pennies for their labor, and defended it.
 I know they are vulnerable right now and could be pressured to change this practice
if enough people join me in speaking out.
Click here now to sign a petition demanding that Goodwill stop exploiting disabled workers and pay a fair wage.
Thank you for your support.
Sheila Leighland
Great Falls, Montana
Sign the Petition
Mailing Address: · 216 W 104th St., #130 · New York, NY 10025

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