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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

September 5, 2013 at 6:28 AM

Fast-food workers push for higher minimum wage

It’s up to you

Ethan Dietrich-Reed, laid off from the Capitol Hill Qdoba when it closed, claps in a brief downpour outside Panera Bread opposite Seattle Central Community College during a demonstration and walkout of fast food and coffee shop employees on Broadway Ave on Capitol Hill Thursday, August 29, 2013. The rally was part of a nationwide protest, spanning to New York and Detroit, of low-wage laborers demanding a $15 per hour minimum wage. [Lindsey Wasson, The Seattle Times.]

Ethan Dietrich-Reed, laid off from the Capitol Hill Qdoba when it closed, claps in a brief downpour outside Panera Bread opposite Seattle Central Community College during a demonstration and walkout of fast food and coffee shop employees on Broadway Ave on Capitol Hill Thursday, August 29, 2013. The rally was part of a nationwide protest, spanning to New York and Detroit, of low-wage laborers demanding a $15 per hour minimum wage. [Lindsey Wasson, The Seattle Times.]

Let me see if I have this straight, the fast-food workers want $15 per hour because they can’t live on minimum wage. [“Labor turns up heat over low wages,” page one, Sept. 2.]

I’m sorry, but I take issue with that idea. Both of my children worked fast-food jobs while growing up to pay for car insurance and have spending money. They knew it wasn’t a career and made plans accordingly. One joined the Navy, and one went to college, and yes, he got student loans to do just that.

As a single parent, I too worked a low-paying job, trying to make ends meet without child support or other assistance, but that didn’t stop me from pulling myself up by my bootstraps and working my way up to a good, decent-paying job.

Instead of going on strike and asking for more money with no increase in responsibilities, figure out how to get training to make yourself more employable or investigate loans and return to school. There’s a lot of help available out there if you have the desire and are willing to investigate all avenues.

Believe me, I’ve walked in your shoes and understand the worry of how to feed your child, buy clothes and pay the baby-sitter; however, it’s up to you and no one else to make your life better.

Putting some smaller, mom-and-pop fast-food places out of business because it’s the easy way out just doesn’t cut it in my book.

Jill Eshenbaugh, University Place

0 Comments | More in Economy, Politics, Seattle | Topics: fast food, labor, living wage

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