Illinois contractors will no longer be allowed to pay workers with disabilities a sub-minimum wage.
Governor J.B. Pritzker was in Chicago Monday announcing the signing of an executive order today ending the practice for any company that the state contracts with: “Nothing about us without us: it’s the call of the Disability Rights movement, and it’s the standard that my administration strives for in all that we do. When members of the Disability Advocacy community asked my team to make sure the State of Illinois is doing our part to eliminate the disparities created by paying people with disabilities a sub-minimum wage, we listened. Today, I am very proud to sign an executive order that will ban state agencies from entering into contracts with vendors who pay workers with disabilities a sub-minimum wage.”
In addition, the EO requires state agencies who currently have contracts with vendors who pay people with disabilities a sub-minimum wage to re-negotiate those contracts to ensure everyone is paid at least the minimum wage.
The State Use Program, which this EO encompasses, encourages all agencies to purchase products and services produced and provided by people with disabilities. The program is intended to provide long-term employment opportunities for people with disabilities through non-profit agencies who contract with state agencies.