President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Wagner-O'Day Act (JWOD) into law on June 25, 1938. This Act was named after its co-sponsors, Senator Robert F. Wagner and Congresswoman Caroline O'Day. The Act requires that all government agencies prioritize the purchasing of products to suppliers that employ individuals who are blind. In the same year, Dr. Peter J. Salmon, executive secretary of the Industrial Home for the Blind recommended the name "National Industries for the Blind (NIB)."
NIB was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) private, nonprofit corporation with a mission "to promote the welfare of blind persons in general and blind workers in particular." The core criteria for NPA eligibility is that 75% of total direct labor hours must be performed by people who are blind or have other significant disabilities.
In effort to assist with the hiring of individuals who are blind or severely disabled, SourceAmerica, formally NISH, was created and is the leading source of job opportunities for a dedicated and highly qualified workforce. The independent federal agency that administers the AbilityOne Program derived from the Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled. This Committee determines the fair market prices for the products and services that are suitable for placement on its procurement list for the Federal government.