A national survey cited in Dague (2012) indicates that barriers to the transition from sheltered workshops to integrated employment include negative attitudes towards persons with disabilities and their ability to work in a competitive employment environment, funding, regulation, lack of expertise and lack of leadership. In 2012, 75% of adults with developmental disabilities worked in sheltered workshops (Butterworth, Hall, Smith, Migliore, & Winsor, 2011; Mai-Simera, 2018). The fact that people with disabilities are still destined to work in sheltered workshops reflects the fact that there is still an underlying assumption that some people are unable to work in competitive employment (May-Simera, 2018). Sheltered workshops are still seen as providing people with disabilities with a safer alternative to competitive employment, with fewer demands and more structure, while creating an environment that encourages friendships rather than harsh judgments (Hoffman, 2013; Mai-Simera, 2018). Despite a culture of respect and acceptance of persons with disabilities, employers still assume that these employees need excessive support in the areas of communication, motivation, understanding and following instructions, as well as possible harassment by employees, which discourages them from wanting to hire employees with special needs (Hoffman, 2013). In the United Kingdom, the term has been replaced by social enterprises. However, the term «social enterprise» implies that the organization would trade in the market and take some commercial risk and would not be completely dependent on state subsidies, as the traditional sheltered workshop model might allow. Under this new model, the company could receive a subsidy to compensate for the reduced productivity of its disadvantaged workers in order to be able to compete with traditional companies on a «level playing field». The purpose of the hospital was mainly to treat those who were sick or completely disabled, but in the Bedlam created by its population there were also the rudiments of kindergarten, school, home for the poor and asylum for the insane. Today`s workshops, which involve the provision of medical and therapeutic services, could be seen as the result of a line of development that goes back to the medieval hospital and extends through the American district hospitals of recent times, institutions that also wanted to fulfill the dual function of curing the sick and employing the disabled. Sheltered workshops were built as an appendage of the special schools for the blind founded in the 19th century. It is significant that these schools quickly deliberately severed their ties with the businesses they had set up when it became clear that the functions of education and employment could not reasonably be mixed up in the same curriculum.
After that, the workshops were operated independently of the care and teaching facilities. Wappett says sheltered workshops isolate people with disabilities and don`t teach real skills. In addition, employees with disabilities deserve fair remuneration. A handful of states have also banned the practice of paying a minimum wage to people with disabilities. However, Weiler made efforts to pay for sheltered workshops with state funds when federal funds are eliminated. Among a number of private workshops, these remain the main objectives of the workshop activity. One organization sponsors dozens of workshops. The goodwill industry is perhaps the most successful of all the chains of workshops sponsored by the mission or the Church.
In Canada, sheltered workshops for employment assistance will be phased out, but will remain a predominant occupational model for people with developmental disabilities with an employment rate of less than 30%.  The Australian Disability Enterprise (ADE) sector in Australia generally has its roots in the early 1950s, when families of people with disabilities set up sheltered workshops to provide work activities for people with disabilities. At that time, employment opportunities for people with disabilities were extremely limited. Another challenge is the current operation of sheltered workshops, as well as the attitude of employees towards people with disabilities (Migliore, Grossi, Mank and Rogan, 2008). Migliore et al. (2007) note that it is convenient and easy to place a person in a sheltered workshop while helping them transition to competitive employment that creates more work for employees. While many workshops claim to be a tool to prepare individuals for competitive employment, many of these individuals end up not receiving competitive employment (Hoffman, 2013; Mai-Simera, 2018). For sheltered workshops to continue to function, they must have a certain number of workers and produce services or products that sell, so instead of encouraging talented workers who might be ready for competitive employment, these workers are often kept in sheltered workshops to produce more (Hoffman, 2013). «With some changes at the federal level, many of these centres believe their days are numbered,» said Senator Todd Weiler, R-Woods Cross, who supports sheltered shelters.
He says they are an important option for people with disabilities and their families. A logical line of development from which today`s workshop emerged is that of the medieval hospital and the early modern era, which, like the institution, was generally under ecclesiastical patronage, but could differ in its specific function. .