Two recent articles highlight the leadership of state legislators in speaking out for good jobs at living wages.
1) Legislator Feels the Grind of a Low-Wage Job , Sen Marilyn Moore, Hartford Courant, February 21, 2016.
Connecticut State Senator Marilyn Moore from Bridgeport, CT took a job as a seasonal retail store employee, to see what working conditions were like for low-wage retail workers. "…We all hear the stories, but I decided if I am going to propose legislation, I need to talk with authority and knowledge." She found the work exhausting and frustrating, and was never offered sufficient hours, or regular shifts so she could apply for a second job. Read Sen. Moore's op-ed
2) South Carolina's leading low-wage job creator? Uncle Sam, The State, February 29, 2016
In a in a letter to the editor , South Carolina State Rep. Wendell G. Gilliard points out that the "the U.S. government is the leading low-wage job creator in South Carolina, responsible for more than 30,000 poverty jobs that pay under $12 an hour, the federal poverty guideline for a family of four. That's more poverty jobs than than Wal-Mart and McDonald's combined."
The federal government contributes to low-wage private sector jobs through its contracts, loans and subsidies to low-wage private sector employers, Rep. Gilliard says.
Rep. Gilliard's letter cites a report from Good Jobs Nation, South Carolina's Largest Low Wage Job Creator: The Federal Contribution to Low-Wage Unemployment in the Palmetto State, building on a methodology developed by Demos in their 2013 report, Underwriting Bad Jobs. Good Jobs Nation is supported by national faith, labor and advocacy organizations including Change to Win, Interfaith Worker Justice, the Ecumenical Poverty Initiative, Progressive Congress, and the Campaign for America's Future.
A previous survey by the National Employment Law Project found that 91 percent of port truck drivers in Charleston who transport military cargo have trouble paying their bills even though they work 60 or more hours a week. Disturbingly, nearly all of the low-wage workers in the survey are African-Americans.
Chuck Bell, Vice-Chair
National Jobs for All Coalition
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