One of the monotonous left-wing canards offered against Wal-Mart by its fanatical haters is that Wal-Mart fails to pay its employees a so-called "living wage."
The Penn State University Living Wage Calculator figures a living wage for one adult with one child in Moscow to be $12.33 an hour. The City of Moscow established a "living wage" last year of $10.00 an hour for all businesses that conduct business with the city.
That's why this admission from Co-Op board member Bill London last week was a bit startling:
Most starting jobs (after training) at the Co-op pay from $7.25 to $8.75 per hour. A very few lowest-rung jobs do begin at $6.75.$7.25 to $8.75 an hour? A starting wage of $6.75? Wal-Mart in Moscow pays $8.50 to $10.00 an hour, with a starting wage of $7.25. The Wal-Mart medical benefits plan is open to all part time workers, regardless of hours worked, after one year of service, and all other Wal-Mart benefits are much more generous than the Co-Op.
Benefits to workers of 20 hours/week or more includes:
2 week paid vacation
18% discount on purchases and free lunch
Benefits to workers of 30 hours/week or more includes those plus health/dental insurance (retirement benefits if work longer than 2 years)
One could hope that the Co-Op might be an oasis of sanity, where socialist rhetoric meets capitalist reality, or where the realization could sink in that stocking shelves or working a cash register are never going to be high-paying careers. One could hope. Instead, anyone think it's time for a petition?
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