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Monday, April 4, 2011

Single workers require $14 hourly to provide for basic needs, minimum wage stuck at $7.25, study cites

Faith, Fraud & Minimum Wage                                       Image via Wikipedia
Most American workers and unemployed job seekers know that the Federal minimum wage does not provide enough economic income to take care of basic needs. In the same aspect, presenting this information as proof to a potential employer as been difficult, at best, until now.

A recent study drafted by the nonprofit Wider Opportunities for Women, highlights that in order for an individual to  meet basic expenses, save for retirement and emergencies; the worker needs an income of $30,012 a year or just above $14 per hour. 

The Federal minimum wage, which is what most entry-level workers would make, is only $7.25 per hour; so to meet basic living needs, an individual would need twice the minimum wage amount.

The $14.00 an hour wage, noted in the study highlighted how much income it takes to meet basic needs, including housing, utilities, food, health care and transportation.

For a single worker, who's a parent of two young children, an annual income of $57,756 or just over $27 an hour, would be required attain economic stability. For a nuclear family with two working parents and two young children, they both would need to earn $67,920 a year, or about $16 an hour per worker, to maintain basic stability.  

With the federal minimum wage yearly level of $15080, this is nearly $7000 per year under the national poverty level for a family of four, $22,050. According to the Census Bureau, 14.3 percent of Americans were living below the poverty line in 2009.

Media resources highlighted on Friday, April 1st, that the U.S. economy added 216,000 jobs in March and the jobless rate dropped by .1%, from 8.9% to 8.8%.  But, the Bureau of Labor Statistics complete report highlighted that job gains mainly came from low-wage and/or near minimum wage employment opportunities such as retail, hospitality and home health care. 

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