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Could People with Disabilities Be Paid Less Than the Minimum Wage?
We read that Frank Field MP – who is the chairman of the Commons Work and Pensions Committee – has suggested that disabled people could be payed less than the minimum wage to encourage people to give them jobs.
We think that this is wrong. Everybody should have the same rights, whether they have a disability or not.
We think that something does need to be done to help more people with disabilities get jobs, but paying them less is unfair.
Even though Mr Field said that lower wages could be “combined with higher benefits to ensure disabled workers did not receive any less in their pocket” – we think that taking away disabled people’s rights is a dangerous thing to start doing.
We think that if people have a disability that means they work as much as some other people can work, then they could have part time jobs but the same hourly wage.
At My Life My Choice, we have recently appointed three consultants with learning disabilities. My Life My Choice consultants do a mixture of inspections work (with CQC and Oxfordshire County Council Quality Checkers), presenting, travel training, and consultancy – that adds up to 16 hours a week or less.
This means they can continue to get their ESA benefit but they also get the benefit of working, e.g. they make an important contribution to the charity and earn some extra money. They are paid £11 an hour.
Although we only have three consultants at the moment, we hope to grow this as the charity expands and we have more work to give out to people.
Thank you to My Life My Choice for this weeks blog in easy-read format!
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