Majority of U.S. fast-food workers need public assistance — study – Yahoo Finance
By Atossa Araxia Abrahamian
NEW YORK, Oct 15 (Reuters) – More than half of low-wage workers employed by the largest U.S. fast-food restaurants earn so little that they must rely on public assistance to get by, according to a study released on Tuesday.
This ends up costing U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars a year, the study said.
Data from the U.S. Census Bureau and public benefit programs show 52 percent of fast-food cooks, cashiers and other “front-line” staff had relied on at least one form of public assistance, such as Medicaid, food stamps and the Earned Income Tax Credit program, between 2007 and 2011, researchers at the University of California-Berkeley and the University of Illinois said.
In a concurrent report, the pro-labor National Employment Law Project found that the 10 largest fast-food companies in the United States cost taxpayers more than $3.8 billion each year in public assistance because the workers do not make enough to pay for basic necessities themselves.
“It doesn’t matter whether you work or shop at McDonald\’s or not, the low-wage business model is expensive for everybody,” said NELP policy analyst Jack Temple, who worked on the report. “Companies … are basically pushing off part of their costs on the taxpayers.”
The studies follow large nationwide demonstrations in August, when fast-food workers went on strike and protested outside McDonald’s, Burger King and other restaurants in 60 U.S. cities, demanding a “living wage” of $15 per hour.
Sorry to say this, but the reason so many fast food workers require public assistance is because those jobs were designed for teenagers getting assistance from their families, NOT for adults raising families of their own. Instead of blaming the employers for not paying enough how about pointing the finger at the White House for creating an economic environment that reduces job creation, and of course, looking in the mirror and assessing how to increase ones own skills set to get a better paying job.