Labor Day ’13 – It is Time for American Workers to Get Lucky
Not lucky in the slang sense, but luck for a gain in wages and benefits for their full-time and part-time employees’ hard work.
How about a living wage for everyone that passes a 30-day probation period? I believe this is an ethical solution.
It should make sense for – particularly corporations in the service sector – to give even part-time employees a living wage! We should support the occasional worker strikes at:
- Costco and Sam’s Club
These companies employment practices are costing government big-time funds and scarce safety-net resources.
Minimum wage must be adjusted for regional living conditions. Real estate, transportation costs, educational expenses, food prices, and medical necessities vary by location. For instance, we did an analysis in Sonoma County, California during 2009 and found that the living wage was $14.00 per hour.
Our study in a Southern Indiana college town – Monroe County -resulted in a living wage of $12.50/hour. Another community two counties east – Jackson County – had a living wage of $11.00.
What exactly is a living wage? One person earning this living wage could not live alone. It would take two incomes to live in a two-bedroom house or apartment. Food stamps, home energy subsidies, and other welfare assistance for this household would not be necessary. Thus, a worker in the service industries would need a roommate or be married to survive financially.
The latest government statistics should be alarming to the citizenship:
- Summer hiring of college and high school students took a dip this year!
- Unemployment rates (statistics are often doctored-up) indicate a rise. The real unemployment figures are approximately 30%. Many candidates have lost motivation to find viable employment.
- More companies are hiring part-time contractual workers who don’t receive any benefit programs or job security.
- Union activities are usually ineffective. Look at what happens in Northern California with the BART SEIU – an executive order is in-effect prohibiting any strike for at least 60 days.
- The real unemployment rate for disabled Americans willing to work exceeds 70%. What jobs are offered are menial (shredding paper tasks, or stocking supermarket shelves) and pay only minimum wage.
The Wal*Marts of this world are allowing their employees to live in poverty, without health insurance, and without other benefits. Yet these companies are making huge profits. The irony is literally killing people and creating a demand of state, federal, and local welfare resources. While our U.S. senators and congresspersons take a month-long vacation, they complain along with laborers and nothing gets improved.
Please help anyway you can. Place the welfare of low-income Americans on your bucket list.
“Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey on the Escape CD
Schools are back in session but Congress is absent. Go figure…
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– Max’s Scout Services & Communications of the Americas, LLC –