sheltered workshop

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

A year ago, Rhode Island agreed to find better opportunities for at least 2,000 people with developmental and learning disabilities. It was part of a settlement after a federal investigation uncovered a program that funneled people with disabilities into sweat shops, where they toiled for very little pay. 

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Federal investigators said an agreement announced Tuesday will make Rhode Island a national leader in integrating disabled people into the workplace

The 10-year pact grew out of an investigation last year that showed developmentally disabled were being sharply underpaid for their work.

Catherine Welch / RIPR

The Justice Department calls this “a new day” for the Rhode Islanders with developmental disabilities that were moved into segregated workshops and paid well below what they should have earned. The Department of Justice has settled with the state and city of Providence in a case involving some 200 workers.