"IBTIMES: What do families think of their disabled relatives working in an environment where the employer determines the minimum wage in accordance to the Section 14(c) rules?
DECKER: Some want their disabled relatives integrated [working in a non-segregated environment for a private employer] and making at least minimum wage. But you have others who say, “Listen, leave it alone. It’s OK. She gets her social security check. She makes a little extra money. She gets out of the house every day. She’s not sitting at home watching television. I can go to work and this is a place she can go to. And you come along and want to disrupt this thing, you’re going to make my life miserable.”
IBTIMES: How do you answer that?
DECKER: I have to tell them that this isn’t about them. Our job is to represent the person with the disability. You can go into a sheltered workshop any day of the week and go up to workers and find someone saying they like the job, and that their friends are there. Like anybody else, you’ve been doing the same job for 10 or 15 years. You can’t make an informed decision if you haven’t experienced anything else. We would have the same issue when going into institutions – you find people who are asking you to get them out of there, and others who don’t know what the alternative is, or where you want to take them, or whether they’ll be separated from their friends if they get out."