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Interesting Petition By Some Blind People

Creator: n/a
Date: March 20, 1886
Publication: Boston Beacon
Source: Perkins School for the Blind

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Among the many subjects brought before the Legislature of Massachusetts with a view to an appropriation, but a matter not likely to be entertained for the present, is an interesting petition signed by some blind people and their friends who ask for the public assistance of such blind mechanics and artisans as are unable to make a fair living, or to obtain living prices for their labor. They ask for State aid, but not in the form of charity, and point out that in their special trades -- making mattresses and cane seats for chairs -- they have to compete with prison labor. The number of blind people in Massachusetts is about three thousand, or more than the average found in the country. The petition for a fund in their behalf is not likely to be granted, and is not supported by the Perkins Institution. But very clearly something will have to be done to give the temperate and industrious blind a chance to live, and to keep them from pauperism. The proper solution of this problem is yet to be found; but to make people self-supporting, wholly or in part, is clearly better than to drive them into the arms of charity. The blind ask for protection, and their case is very strong.