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Old 08-02-2013, 07:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Rommorwen's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 23
Fast Food and Low Wage Workers

Ok Keith Malley, you frustrate me. You're always going on about how society sucks but no one ever does anything about it and nothing will ever change. It seems like you're talking more about it lately with the Snowden and Trayvon Martin things happening. And yet when people do act and try to change things you belittle their efforts and make fun of them for giving a shit. So, rather than ignoring your ignorance as usual, here is what is happening with the fast food and low wage workers across the country. I could send this in an email, but I may as well update and inform the forums as well. (Sorry in advance for the formatting.)

You said working fast food jobs are for young people and older people should find better jobs. The problem is that since the recession has recovered, most of the new jobs have been low wage fast food/retail jobs... The fact is that there are simply not enough well paying jobs for the amount of people we have in the country... Just because some people lack the education and/or skills that you have... doesn't mean they should live in poverty.

"The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that seven out of 10 growth occupations over the next decade will be low-wage fields. And these jobs are not being done by teenagers. Across the country, the median age of fast-food workers is over 28, and women -- who make up two-thirds of the industry -- are over 32, according to the BLS." ( McJobs Should Pay, Too: Inside Fast-Food Workers' Historic Protest For Living Wages - Sarah Jaffe - The Atlantic )

You said... people working fast food don't deserve even $7 or $8/ hour... that they're lucky to make that.

People are asking for a living wage. As you can see... the people working these low wage jobs are NOT primarily teenagers and college students, they are people who are trying to raise a family in this country.
I'm going to use walmart as an example now (fast food and walmart workers are in basically the same boat)

"Walmart jobs are poverty-level jobs.
Walmart’s average sale Associate makes $8.81 per hour, according to IBISWorld, an independent market research group. This translates to annual pay of $15,576, based upon Walmart’s full-time status of 34 hours per week1. This is significantly below the 2010 Federal Poverty Level of $22,050 for a family of four." ( Fact Sheet ? Wages » Making Change at Walmart )

Because these low wage jobs pay their employees such small wages, many of these employees are forced to get public assistance. "...Walmart employees cost taxpayers more than $1 billion nationwide." And thats JUST Walmart... imagine how many low paying companies are costing taxpayers because of this. ( )

A living wage is beneficial for the employees, as well as the taxpayers who are picking up the slack. More info: Minimum Wage Question and Answer | Raise The Minimum Wage

A note on the activism: "So, this is by far the largest strike by fast-food workers in the history of the United States. It comes less than a year after the first big strike by fast-food workers anywhere in the United States. And it demonstrates a real escalation in this campaign. It’s a dramatic showdown between an embattled labor movement and an industry that increasingly not only is prevalent in the United States economy, but really represents where jobs are going in the United States economy. Organizers estimate that somewhere between 2,000 and 3,000 workers, at least, have gone on strike this week. This is a mammoth industry, and so it’s not one that’s going to concede quickly. And so, we’re going to see this continue to escalate." ( "We Are Slowly Dying": Fast-Food Workers Launch Strike for Living Wage and Right to Unionize | Democracy Now! )

And I live in San Jose, California and just graduated from San Jose State University. A group of students started a campaign, gathered community support and put a measure on the 2012 ballot for the city of San Jose (the 10th largest city in the US) to raise the minimum wage from $8 to $10/hour. The measure passed by about 75% and the city is doing just fine. So... “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.” --Margaret Mead

Anyway... stop hating on low wage workers and do some fucking research. <3
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