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Local manufacturing company provides jobs to the blind

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - A local manufacturing company that provides jobs to people who are legally blind is celebrating 20 years of being in business.

Midwest Enterprises for the Blind--or M-Web--is based in Kalamazoo, and is the only company in Michigan that primarily employs blind workers.

Across the country, 70 percent of blind people are unemployed.

The West Michigan non-profit currently has 25 blind workers that earn more than the national average rate for a blind person.

There, they assemble and package items like chairs and tables.

Company officials say the opportunity to work helps boost their employees' self-esteem.

"There's a misconception that a blind worker is less capable, not as competent as a sighted worker," said Business Development Coordinator William Drain. "The only difference between our business and other businesses is that we employ the blind."

M-Web says it's looking to expand in the West Michigan area by partnering with more local businesses.

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