Hard As It Is To Land A Job These Days, Getting One, Is Not Nearly Enough For Basic Economic Security.
Billy C. Ushered In The Financial Crisis:
The position taken by the attorneys general received support in a series of court rulings dealing with the question of whether banks can rely on flawed (DERIVATIVES) documentation to repossess homes. In January 2011, Massachusetts’s top court voided the seizure of two homes by Wells Fargo & Company and US Bancorp after the banks failed to show that they held the mortgages at the time of the foreclosures, and courts in several states are considering similar cases. Remember The Repealing Of The Glass Steagall Act by Billy Lewinski Clinton Allowed The Derivatives Market. FDR stopped Rothschild By signing the Glass Steagall, which presently is being ‘sat on’ by Barney Frank And A Hairy Reed.
A single worker with two young children needs an annual income of $57,756, or just over $27 an hour, to attain economic stability!
The Labor Department will released its monthly snapshot of the job market on Friday, and economists expect it to show that the nation’s employers added about 190,000 jobs in March. With an unemployment rate that has been stubbornly stuck near 9 percent, those workers could be considered lucky.
But many of the jobs being added in retail, hospitality and home health care, to name a few categories, are unlikely to pay enough for workers to cover the cost of fundamentals like housing, utilities, food, health care, transportation and, in the case of working parents, child care.
A separate report being released Friday tries to go beyond traditional measurements like the poverty line and minimum wage to show what people need to earn to achieve a basic standard of living.
The study, commissioned by Wider Opportunities for Women, a nonprofit group, builds on an analysis the group and some state and local partners have been conducting since 1995 on how much income it takes to meet basic needs without relying on public subsidies. The new study aims to set thresholds for economic stability rather than mere survival, and takes into account saving for retirement and emergencies.
“We wanted to recognize that there was a cumulative impact that would affect one’s lifelong economic security,” said Joan A. Kuriansky, executive director of Wider Opportunities, whose report is called “The Basic Economic Security Tables for the United States.” “And we’ve all seen how often we have emergencies that we are unprepared for,” she said, especially during the recession. Layoffs or other health crises “can definitely begin to draw us into poverty.”
According to the report, a single worker needs an income of $30,012 a year — or just above $14 an hour — to cover basic expenses and save for retirement and emergencies. That is close to three times the 2010 national poverty level of $10,830 for a single person, and nearly twice the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
A single worker with two young children needs an annual income of $57,756, or just over $27 an hour, to attain economic stability, and a family with two working parents and two young children needs to earn $67,920 a year, or about $16 an hour per worker.
That compares with the national poverty level of $22,050 for a family of four. The most recent data from the Census Bureau found that 14.3 percent of Americans were living below the poverty line in 2009.
Wider Opportunities and its consulting partners saw a need for an index that would indicate how much families need to earn if, for example, they want to save for their children’s college education or for a down payment on a home.
“It’s an index that asks how can a family have a little grasp at the middle class,” said Michael Sherraden, director of the Center for Social Development at Washington University in St. Louis, who consulted on the project and helped develop projections for how much income families need to devote to savings. “If we’re interested in families being able to be stable and not have their lives disrupted and have a little protection and backup and be able to educate their children, then this is the way we have to think.”
The numbers will not come as a surprise to working families who are struggling. Tara, a medical biller who declined to give her last name, said that she earns $15 an hour, while her husband, who works in building maintenance, makes $11.50 an hour. The couple, who live in Jamaica, Queens, have three sons, aged 9, 8 and 6.
“We tried to cut back on a lot of things,” she said. But the couple has been unable to make ends meet on their wages, and visit the River Fund food pantry in Richmond Hill every Saturday. With no money for savings, “I’m hoping that I will hit the lotto soon,” she said.
To develop its income assessments, the report’s authors examined government and other publicly available data to determine basic costs of living. For housing, which along with utilities is usually a family’s largest expense, the authors came up with “a decent standard of shelter which is accessible to those with limited income” by averaging data from the Department of Housing and Urban Development that identified a monthly cost equivalent for rent at the fortieth percentile among all rents paid in each metropolitan area across the country.
They chose a “low cost” food plan from the nutritional guidelines of the Department of Agriculture, and calculated commuting costs “assuming the ownership of a small sedan.” For health care, they calculated expenses for workers both with and without employer-based benefits.
Ms. Kuriansky said that the income projections do not take into account frills like gifts or meals out. “It’s a very bare-bones budget,” she said.
Obviously, the income needs change drastically depending on where a family lives. Ms. Kuriansky said the group was working on developing data for states and metropolitan areas.
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