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The minimum wage isn't a living wage

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

I wish to ask those who oppose raising the minimum wage to think back to when they first had a job, full- or part-time. I'm a senior citizen, and my first job was in the 1950s. I worked full-time and was paid $1 an hour, with no benefits. So between the 1950s and 2013, the minimum wage has gone up to $7.25 an hour. So what we have seen basically has been a $6 increase over those 63 years.

How can you pay for gas, rent, utilities, medical care, etc., on that amount of money? I know of people who spend that amount weekly on frivolous things. Yet we wonder why there are more citizens on food stamps and receiving subsidies. We hear that such funding should be cut.

Now more then ever there are corporations and businesses that only hire part-time employees in order to avoid paying any type of benefits. These are not small mom-and-pop industries either. They are multi-million dollar companies.

We have read that Papa John's and Subway are turning full-time employees into part-time workers to avoid having to pay them any benefits under the Affordable Care Act. I'm sure many more will follow.

I'm amazed that anyone really thinks that working 40 hours to make $280 a week before taxes constitutes a "living wage."

Lois Raimondi Munchel, Forest Hill

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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