Statistics show few fines for violations of disability labor law

Labor Department statistics show the U.S. imposed fines totally $8,360 on just three of nearly 800 employers it found to be paying illegally low wages to workers with disabilities from 2003 to 2008. Most employers, however, were ordered to pay some of the $5 million in back wages owed to more than 18,500 workers during that time period. A Labor Department spokesman said many violators were small nonprofits, and fining them may have been inappropriate. U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin said he is preparing to propose legislation to address the situation.

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