Release Date: 
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
Chris Danielsen
Director of Public Relations
National Federation of the Blind
(410) 659-9314, extension 2330
(410) 262-1281 (Cell)

Seattle Ends Subminimum Wages for Workers with Disabilities

National Federation of the Blind Commends Unanimous City Council Vote

Baltimore, Maryland (April 3, 2018): Seattle’s city council unanimously voted yesterday to ban the practice of paying the blind and other workers with disabilities less than the city’s minimum wage. The National Federation of the Blind, which has led efforts to eliminate the practice at the local, state, and federal level (including in Seattle), commended the move.

“We appreciate the leadership demonstrated in Seattle by rejecting subminimum wages and, by extension, the underlying low expectations and misconceptions about the capacity of people with disabilities,” said Mark Riccobono, President of the National Federation of the Blind. “Even as we continue to advocate for change in the United States Congress, we hope other cities and states will emulate what Seattle and the states of Alaska, Maryland, New Hampshire, and Vermont have done to promote fairness and equality for workers with disabilities. Congratulations to the National Federation of the Blind of Washington and its partners for achieving this victory for blind and otherwise disabled citizens of Seattle.”