The Phaserl


Corporate Disease: Workers Are A Cost Not A Productive Resource

by Wolf Richter, Testosterone

Now we have a number, limited as it may be: the amount in public assistance received by families of people who worked as cooks, cashiers, and in front-line jobs in the fast-food industry – workers who’re dogged by low wages, part-time work, and scarce employer-provided health benefits – amounted to nearly $7 billion per year. This, in essence, is a way for the $200 billion-a-year industry to do something our corporate welfare queens excel at: shuffle off part of the costs of doing business to the hapless taxpayer.

The mix in the fast-food industry is particularly toxic, according to a new report that relied on data from the Census Bureau and public benefit programs for the years between 2007 and 2011: a median wage of $8.69 per hour for a median work week of 30 hours. Only 13% of these workers received employer-provided health benefits. Among those working 30 hours or more, 17% received health benefits. That compares to 59% for the whole work force.

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