ONTD Political

McDonalds Tells Workers To Budget By Getting A Second Job And Turning Off Their Heat

1:03 pm - 07/15/2013

McDonalds has partnered with Visa to launch a website to help its low-wage workers making an average $8.25 an hour to budget. But while the site is clearly meant to illustrate that McDonalds workers should be able to live on their meager wages, it actually underscores exactly how hard it is for a low-paid fast food worker to get by.

The site includes a sample”‘budget journal” for McDonalds’ employees that offers a laughably inaccurate view of what it’s like to budget on a minimum wage job. Not only does the budget leave a spot open for “second job,” it also gives wholly unreasonable estimates for employees’ costs: $20 a month for health care, $0 for heating, and $600 a month for rent. It does not include any budgeted money for food or clothing.

Basically every facet of this budget is unachievable. For an uninsured person to independently buy health care, he or she must shell out on average $215 a month — just for an individual plan. If that person wants to eat, “moderate” spending will run them $32 a week for themselves, and $867 a month to feed a family of four. And if a fast food worker is living in a city? Well, New York City rents just reached an average of $3,000 a month.

The sample budget is also available in Spanish. On another section of the site, it concludes, “You can have almost anything you want as long as you plan ahead and save for it.”

Neither McDonalds nor Visa returned requests for comment by the time of publication.
Last year, Bloomberg News found that it would take the average McDonalds employee one million hours of work to earn as much money as the company’s CEO. This immense wage disparity in the fast food industry has sparked a series of protests and walk-outs by low-wage workers working at fast food chains around the country — in New York, Chicago, Washington, and Seattle, to name a few cities, workers from chains including KFC, McDonalds, Burger King, and Taco Bell have spoken publicly about the need for serious wage increases across the industry.

(H/T Low Pay Is Not Okay)

ebay313 16th-Jul-2013 01:09 am (UTC)
This reminds me of when I was talking with a professor about doing a PhD program, and I said I didn't see how I could afford to live on what was being offered for assistantships (<$2,000/month gross) without any other income. Her response was that it was more than enough- I could spend $800/month on rent and the rest is spending money!
I still think about that because I still can't wrap my head around in what world everything besides rent is spending money.

And $20/month on health insurance? I don't have insurance through work, and it costs me $500/month for insurance. (Can't get anything cheaper right now because of pre-existing conditions :-\) Then actually using it costs me on average $100/month, assuming nothing goes wrong and I don't need to go to the hospital or have more frequent appointments than expected.
foureyedgirl 16th-Jul-2013 03:12 am (UTC)
Wow..I guess they didn't remember what it was like when they were a student?? $800 for rent if you're lucky. ugh.
ebay313 16th-Jul-2013 05:06 am (UTC)
Around here $800 is actually a very fine amount for rent for a single person, but how exactly I'm supposed to cover utilities, car payment, car insurance, gas, cell phone, internet service, groceries, medical costs, et cetera on the few hundred left after that a month...
foureyedgirl 16th-Jul-2013 11:06 pm (UTC)
Yeah that's absolutely ridiculous, no one could manage that at all.
roseofjuly 17th-Jul-2013 02:29 am (UTC)
This is why I always have a part-time job as a grad student and my advisor doesn't say shit about it. Because what the fuck can he say? I'm doing my PhD in New York.

The new fellowship I just got pays $22,000 a year ($1800 a month before taxes) and is trying to tell me I can't work more than 2 days a week. LOL gurl bye.
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