Taxpayers Picking Up The Slack For Low-Wage Fast Food Jobs

Nov 1, 2013

A study by the University of California at Berkeley shows 45 percent of Ohio's 75-thousand fast food workers make so little income that they turn to public assistance programs to make ends meet.

The jobs are often part-time, pay low wages and offer workers no benefits. Report author and economist Sylvia Allegretto says the research also shows corporate profits as a share of national income are at record highs, while the share going to workers is at a 55-year low – and falling.

Amy Hanauer with the progressive-leaning think tank Policy Matters Ohio says the effects are felt throughout the economy.

The study shows more than half of the families of fast-food workers across the country use public assistance programs, compared with 25 percent of the general workforce. The study was conducted as fast food workers seek to unionize and seek a higher federal minimum wage. Fast food chains have said a higher minimum wage would result in job losses.