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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

July 29, 2013 at 7:12 PM

Cheap labor in Seattle and beyond

Wage gap grows

Froma Harrop addressed the abuse of minimum-wage labor in this country and the use of the immigration bill in Congress to aid in its continuation. [“Column: A steady supply of cheap labor is nobody’s right,” Opinion, July 27.]

However, the problem extends well beyond the minimum-wage group. Boeing and Microsoft are leaders in trying to expand the visa program so they can import lower-wage skilled workers (computer folks) from foreign nations.

Congress recently increased the pilot-retirement age by five years, claiming there was about to be a shortage of pilots, while there were many pilots in layoff status.

I know of two youngsters who borrowed more than $100,000 to complete college-aviation programs, only to discover they could not pay off the loans if they were to enter the industry with our regional airlines paying less than $25,000 salaries.

Congress continues to pass laws that have the wages of most people falling behind inflation, while the top few percent continue with large salary increases. The wage gap continues to expand to the detriment of our country as the majority allows sideline issues to dominate.

Dan Shields, Auburn

Comments | More in Economy, Politics, Seattle | Topics: aviation, Boeing, cheap labor

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