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)

crossfire 16th-Jul-2013 01:52 am (UTC)
Hardly. As I said it works out to $4.75 a meal for a 4-week month, or $3.80/meal for a 5-week month. That's not at all extravagant and pretty much assumes you're buying very few pre-prepared foods and cooking most everything from scratch.

Still though, feel free to cut it by 50%. At $200/month for groceries the numbers still don't match with the fictional budget proposed by McDonalds.
flyingwild 16th-Jul-2013 04:07 am (UTC)
It feels high to me...I cook most of our meals and we probably spend $50 a week on groceries? For two people.

But yeah the fake budget is extremely unrealistic.
crossfire 16th-Jul-2013 04:56 pm (UTC)
Even at $25/week (I'm assuming a one person budget here) or $100/month, the numbers aren't even close to adding up.

The grocery budget is something that varies widely depending on region, I think. Here in the Bay Area, veggies are inexpensive, but a pound of 80/20 hamburger will run you $4 (on sale) to $5 (regular price). Also dietary requirements are a factor; this was my budget but I don't eat processed foods or carbohydrates at all--no pasta, bread, rice, potatoes, corn, peas, sweets, anything with HFCS or sugar, etc. If I ate pasta and rice I know my food budget would be a lot less. I was also assuming three meals a day, which a lot of people don't do. And in that budget line item I also included stuff like paper products, cleaning supplies, laundry supplies, otc medicines, basically anything you get at the grocery store and drug store has to fit into that number.

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