Career and Job-Hunting Blog
Career and job-search news, trends, and scoops for job-seekers, compiled by the staff of Quintessential Careers.
|Career and Job-Hunting Blog Index|
|October 15, 2008|
Low-wage and hourly workers continue to face economic and social challenges while struggling to make ends meet.
The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that some 75 million workers — more than half of all workers in the U.S. — are paid on an hourly basis. In the report reviewing 2007 statistics (the latest available), more than 1.7 million workers reported receiving wages at or below the minimum wage — with almost 1.5 million reporting wages below the minimum wage.
While the federal minimum wage was finally increased in 2007 — from the long-stagnant $5.15 an hour to $5.85 an hour — many minimum wage workers struggle with basic living expenses, including housing, food, child-care, transportation, and medical care. Many hourly workers do not have access to employer-provided benefits — and of those lucky enough to worker for an employer that does provide those benefits, many earning the minimum wage can simply not afford to participate because of the co-payments and premiums.
In terms of education, almost 40 million hourly wage earners — more than half of the total of all hourly wage earners — have a high school diploma or less, while almost 65 million have completed up to an associate’s degree or less.
One solution — besides the continued increase in minimum wages to cover inflation and cost-of-living increases — is the continued development of work-support programs to assist working families. These work support programs include government programs such as the earned income tax credit, food stamps, children’s health insurance programs, transportation assistance programs.
Learn more about low-wage workers in this section of Quintessential Careers: Low Wage Jobs: Tools, Statistics, Resources.
|Quintessential Career and Job Resources|
Other topical resources for job-seekers:
- QuintZine: A Career and Job-Hunting Newsletter
- Q-Tips: Quick and Quintessential Career & Job Tips
- Q&A with Career & College Experts
- The Career Doctor Career Advice Column
- College, Career, and Job-Related Articles
- Career and Job-Related Tutorials