workers in a field

People in institutions in the 1960s were also working, often in the institutions where they lived, and often for no wage whatever. In 1968, the NARC adopted a statement about pay for work in institutions. "Residents performing jobs related to maintaining and operating the residential facility should receive pay [and working conditions] commensurate with their ability for work performed… Working for the benefit of the institution should not be confused with training programs designed to benefit the resident."

The President's Committee estimated that by 1970 the value of unpaid resident labor in "facilities for mentally retarded persons and by mentally retarded residents of public mental institutions" was $1.25 million. The work included housekeeping, laundry, repair work and care of other residents.