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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Why Do Republicans Hate Young People? And Poor People? (And Working People in General?)

Posted by on Wed, Feb 6, 2013 at 8:32 AM

As if it already isn't impossible to work one's way through college, state Senate Republicans want to make it harder still by slashing the minimum wage for part-time jobs:

Senate Bill 5275 would establish a “training wage” equal to 75 percent of either the state or national minimum wage — whichever is higher — for the first 680 hours a new employee works. Minimum wage in the state is currently $9.19 per hour, meaning the training wage would be set at $6.89 per hour.

Hmm. Let's see now... 680 hours divided by a typical student half-time job of 20 hours a week equals 34 weeks of three-quarter pay... yeah that should pretty much cover the entire academic year. Then the student goes home for the summer, only to come back the next fall to start a new "training wage" part-time job all over again. Sweet!

The bill's sponsor, Senator Janéa Holmquist Newbry (R-Moses Lake) says this is all about helping teenagers get jobs, but really, it's about screwing minimum wage workers. Anybody who has ever worked a minimum wage job knows that these are the jobs with the highest turnover because both the work and the pay tend to suck. These are also the jobs that require the least amount of skills, and thus the least amount of "training." If that wasn't true, employers would pay more so as to cut down the costs of turnover. But they don't. Instead they want to pay less, because minimum wage workers are expendable.

So at the very best, this bill would mean $1,562.30 out of the pocket of each minimum wage worker, and into the pocket of their employer... every time they start a new minimum wage job.

Fortunately, this bill would have no hope of passing the Democratic controlled House. But that Senate Republicans are willing to kick up the shit storm that would come from messing with Washington's voter-approved minimum wage shows you just how profoundly anti-worker they really are.


Comments (16) RSS

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pfffter 1
That's okay. I hate them back with every fiber of my being.
Posted by pfffter on February 6, 2013 at 8:40 AM · Report this
fletc3her 2
This is just a bald attempt to gut the minimum wage law.

There are plenty of trades which still have training periods, but the idea is to earn more than minimum wage after that period. Who would train up to minimum wage?

If teenagers are having a hard time finding jobs it's because so many adults have been forced into minimum wage work by the lousy economy.
Posted by fletc3her on February 6, 2013 at 8:50 AM · Report this
seatackled 3
But if you could get this done, then maybe that poor cafe owner won't have to add that sick-leave surcharge to pay for his cheating workers calling in sick when they're not.
Posted by seatackled on February 6, 2013 at 8:52 AM · Report this
Pick1 4
This would have a huge effect on the hiring policy of minimum wage jobs as employee retention is already in the shitter. It will be financially beneficial for minimum wage companies to hire more part time staffers, fire them after 6 months before their wage increases and hire new people...

Job stability amongst the poor is a MAJOR concern. This would make things a hell of a lot worse.

How many of these fuckers have even HELD a minimum wage job in their goddamn lives?
Posted by Pick1 on February 6, 2013 at 9:00 AM · Report this
I posted a link to this in another thread.. It is worth reading twice:…
Posted by randoma on February 6, 2013 at 9:14 AM · Report this
Republicans hate young, poor, working people because they are old, rich, and don't work. Classic fear of the other. These fucktards just have enough power to enact their hate and fear into policy.
Posted by tired and true on February 6, 2013 at 9:15 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 7
Why the fuck does anyone think making the working classes poorer will help the economy?

And who the hell needs 680 hours of training for a minimum wage, likely service, position?

I wonder how many hours of training it takes to clean, transport, and oversee operations with hazardous and dangerous substances? Hmm, OSHA only requires about 64 hours, with an additional 8 hour refresher annually.

Yeah, I guess 680 hours is fair then for a person to pour coffee and serve food.
Posted by Theodore Gorath on February 6, 2013 at 9:26 AM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 8
“There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible.”
-Henry Ford

Even Henry Fucking Ford knew you have to pay your workers well and he was mostly a piece of shit.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on February 6, 2013 at 9:35 AM · Report this
As @2 says, this doesn't just affect the young or students. Fast-food and other minimum-wage jobs increasingly are filled by middle-aged or older people who lost their job and couldn't find other jobs or couldn't do their physical-labor jobs because they're too old.
Posted by sarah70 on February 6, 2013 at 9:48 AM · Report this
This bill doesn't just target teens - there are no age or experience qualifications *at all* in the bill - so anyone can get paid less, just because the employer decides they need "training".
Posted by cloudveil1 on February 6, 2013 at 9:53 AM · Report this
680 hours...hmmm, why does that number sound so familiar? Oh that's right, it's the minimum to collect unemployment. So this bill incentivizes business to give employees the ax just before said employees have anything to fall back on, thus leaving them desperate for the next 'training wage' job.
Posted by Subdued Excitement on February 6, 2013 at 10:06 AM · Report this
cressona 12
Good point by Goldy about there being no real training aspect to a "training wage."

I want to call out this passage: The bill's sponsor, Senator Janéa Holmquist Newbry (R-Moses Lake) says this is all about helping teenagers get jobs,...

In defense of Ms. Holmquist Newbry, I do understand the teenagers-looking-for-low-wage-work lobby in Olympia is very powerful.
Posted by cressona on February 6, 2013 at 10:33 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 13
What @11 said.

Remember, they wake up every morning, determined to destroy America.
Posted by Will in Seattle on February 6, 2013 at 10:54 AM · Report this
British Columbia tried the training wage thing and scrapped it in 2011. It only applied to a person's first 500 hours of employment, regardless of employer (if employee had 500 hours of work experience and then changed jobs, they could no longer be paid the training wage).

I was trying to find a good article on why it was scrapped, couldn't find anything really on point, but found some references to employers voluntarily not using the training wage because it was too hard to hire.
Posted by CanadianLawyer on February 6, 2013 at 12:02 PM · Report this
Catherwood 15
@11 for the evil, evil, rat bastard win. I think you nailed it.
Posted by Catherwood on February 6, 2013 at 12:35 PM · Report this
This would be great if it were real training. Require employers to pay their employees for classes for at least 50% of the total hours.
Posted by ishf on February 6, 2013 at 4:24 PM · Report this

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