State Repeals Regulation Permitting Sub-Minimal Wage

June 17, 2021 at 7:24 pm HST

SB793 minimum wage bill signed. June 16, 2021. Courtesy photo.

Hawaii lawmakers have taken action to repeal an obsolete law that allowed minimum wages to be paid to certain individuals based on their disabilities. In a ceremony on Washington Place, Governor David Ige signed the law making this practice illegal.

With the passage of SB 793, “the State of Hawaii will correct an outdated provision in our Minimum Wage Act that no longer serves its original purpose and actually discriminates against people with disabilities,” said Rep. Richard HK Onishi, Chairman of the House Labor & Tourism Committee. “I would like to thank the attorneys and my colleagues for their support as this move progressed through the 2021 legislature. I am honored to be able to support this legislation and participate in the signing of this measure by Governor Ige. “

The House-Senate Conference committee reviewing the bill found that laws that allow the payment of sub-minimum wages based on a person’s disability status are based on a provision in the Fair Labor Standards Act, enacted in 1938, around a platform for training and preparation to create people with disabilities in order to obtain competitive jobs in the open market. The committee reported that these laws are out of date and no longer serve their original purpose.

Witness testimony in support of the draft law tabled by the State Council on Developmental Disabilities said that under the old law, a person could be considered “disabled” or “disabled” exempt from the minimum wage.

The Council’s testimony shows that the use of minimum wages “discriminates against people with disabilities and that the use of minimum wages as an employment tool is a clear violation of the civil rights of people with disabilities”.

Comments are closed.