As attorneys who represent persons with varying disabilities, a recent article in the Star Tribune discussing the menial jobs given to people with disabilities was heartbreaking. The article talks about "sheltered workshops", where workers are paid wages for below the minimum wage and given tasks that are menial and unrewarding.
"Many states, inspired by a new civil rights movement to integrate the disabled into mainstream life, are shuttering places like this. Not Minnesota. It still subsidizes nearly 300 sheltered workshops and is now among the most segregated states in the nation for working people with intellectual disabilities.
The workshops are part of a larger patchwork of state policies that are stranding legions of disabled Minnesotans on grim margins of society. More than a decade after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Americans with disabilities have a right to live in the mainstream, many disabled Minnesotans and their families say they still feel forsaken — mired in profoundly isolating and sometimes dangerous environments they didn’t choose and can’t escape."
Full article: click here
Hopefully the attention given to this issue will inspire some changes in how Minnesota views its responsibilities to the disabled adult residents of our state.