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About TIME: 5 Benefits Written Into Transitioning to Integrated and Meaningful Employment Act

By    |   Tuesday, 02 Jun 2015 11:11 AM

The Transitioning to Integrated and Meaningful Employment Act (TIME), introduced to Congress by Representative Gregg Harper (R-Miss) in early 2015, seeks to repeal Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that devalues and segregates the disabled in the workplace.

Despite the numerous benefits the act would offer to people with disabilities, Congress has not yet voted on the bill, which also has a low chance of being passed and only a 3 percent chance of being enacted, according to govtrack.us.

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Below are the most noteworthy benefits of the proposed TIME Act:

1. Abolish use of Special Wage Certificates
Under Section14(c) of the FLSA, employers can obtain a special wage certificate that makes it permissible to pay disabled employees less than the federal minimum wage. The TIME Act would prohibit the Secretary of Labor from issuing these certificates, assuring that all employed disabled individuals are equitably paid the federal minimum wage.

2. Maximize Productivity of the Disabled in the Workplace
Because employers are incentivized to pay disabled employees less than minimum wage, the disabled are often given small and meaningless tasks rather than training that would allow them to more effectively contribute to their place of work.

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The TIME Act would assure that disabled employees are entitled to at least the minimum wage and would thus incentivize employers to better utilize and train employees with disabilities.

3. Encourage Disabled Workers to Achieve Self Sufficiency
Disabled workers who are paid less than minimum wages must depend on government welfare such as Medicaid to live. Paying workers with disabilities livable wages will better enable them to support themselves and depend less on costly government programs.

4. Will Not Hit Employers Hard
The TIME act gradually phases out Section 14(c) of the FLSA before officially repealing the section. Thus employers have time to adjust and arrange to pay and train disabled employees equitably. The act will introduce a transition process rather than a fast change into work places.

5. Help to Reduce Poverty
Americans with disabilities face extra barriers that make them likely to live in poverty, according to the American Psychological Association. The TIME Act would entitle disabled workers to higher pay, making them less prone to poverty and less susceptible to the income gap between households with and without people with disabilities.

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The Transitioning to Integrated and Meaningful Employment Act (TIME), introduced to Congress by Representative Gregg Harper (R-Miss) in early 2015, seeks to repeal Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that devalues and segregates the disabled in the workplace.
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2015-11-02
Tuesday, 02 Jun 2015 11:11 AM
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