Petitioning Goodwill Industries International and 9 others

Goodwill Industries International: Pay Disabled Workers a Real Wage

Goodwill Industries pays thousands of workers with disabilities less than minimum wage by exploiting a provision in the Fair Labor Standards Act left over from the 1930s. Sec 14 (c) allows corporations to pay people with disabilities a subminimum wage. According to Labor Department records, Goodwill pays some of its disabled workers  as low as 22, 38 and 41 cents per hour. This is wrong:  disabled workers at Goodwill deserve to be paid a living wage.

It’s not well known that Goodwill is a multibillion-dollar company whose executives make six-figure salaries. They don’t need to pay disabled people subminimum wages when salaries for the CEOs Goodwill franchises across America total more than $30 million.

Sheilia and Harold Leigland are two examples of disabled Goodwill workers who are paid less than minimum wage for their work. Both are blind and work at Goodwill in Montana hanging clothes. Sheila worked there for four years at about $3.50 an hour but was forced to quit when Goodwill lowered her pay to $2.75. Harold still works there and says Goodwill pays him less because they know he doesn’t have many other options: "We are trapped," he said.

It’s time to start paying disabled people a fair wage and Goodwill can take the lead by paying their disabled workers the minimum wage.

Letter to
Goodwill Industries International
Director of Mission Services Joylin Kirk
Vice President, Mission Advancement Wendi Copeland
and 7 others
Chief Communications Officer & Senior Vice President, Global Affairs Kim Zimmer
Director of Mission Strategy Brad Turner-Little
Senior Director, Government Affairs and Public Policy Seth Turner
Senior Public Relations Specialist Charlene Sarmiento
Director of Public Relations Lauren Lawson
CEO, Goodwill Industries International Jim Gibbons
CEO, Goodwill Industries International Jim Gibbons (CEO, Goodwill Industries International)
I'm writing to tell you that I will not be supporting Goodwill Industries or any of its affiliates until such time as you stop paying disabled workers less than minimum wage. Workers with disabilities deserve to be subject to the same labor law protections as the general population. Despite paying disabled workers in your affiliates well below the federal minimum wage, Goodwill compensates its executives handsomely. If you can afford multi-million dollar executive compensation packages, you can afford to do right by your workers. Until you do, don't expect my donations or my business.