AMARILLO, TX – The U.S. Department of Labor has recovered $52,497 in back wages for 134 workers with disabilities after an Amarillo nonprofit – which provides rehabilitation and vocational training services to adults with developmental and physical disabilities – failed to pay them the required subminimum wage rate.The department’s Wage and Hour Division found Advo Companies Inc. violated federal law when the employer paid employees with disabilities an incorrect subminimum wage based on flawed time studies and incorrect prevailing wage rates. Additionally, the employer failed to provide pre-employment transition services and vocational rehabilitation services for workers 24 and younger and failed make sure all workers were provided with career counseling services, related information and referrals and training opportunities required by Section 511 of the Rehabilitation Act, which negated the employer’s ability to pay the subminimum wage associated with its Fair Labor Standards Act’s 14(c) certification.“Employers must comply with federal regulations and pay workers with disabilities at the proper rate for all the hours they work,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Evelyn Ortiz in Albuquerque, New Mexico. “We are committed to making sure all workers receive the highest protections to which they are entitled and we encourage employers and employees to contact us for compliance assistance.”Since 1991, Advo Companies Inc. has provided services for adults with developmental and physical disabilities, including vocational training, adult day and rehabilitation services, and operates approximately 27 residential homes.Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the division. Workers and employers can contact the division confidentially at its toll-free number, 1-866-4-US-WAGE (487-9243), regardless of immigration status. The division can communicate with callers in more than 200 languages. Download the agency’s new Timesheet App, which is available in English and Spanish for Android and Apple devices, to ensure hours and pay are accurate.                                      

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