1. When you think about fast food workers, you probably think it’s all like this.
2. Just a teenager flipping burgers and fry-o-lating to pick up some extra cash for date night and video games, maybe a little gas money (like a gallon or two). That’s what the big fast food chains want you to believe. It’s also:
3. You ready for the truth?
4. Today, right now, in 2013, the average fast food industry worker is at least 28 years old. Not a teenager — a full-on grownup. I know, right? And guess what: 26% have a family to support.
5. We’re not talking teenagers looking for a little pocket money. We’re talking hardworking adults with kids to feed.
But wait. It gets EVEN MORE AWESOME. How? Your average fast food worker makes about $8.94 an hour and gets only 24 hours of work per week (and lots get less of both). Let’s do the math.
6. That’s about $215 per week, before taxes. To support yourself and your family — rent, food, heating, clothes, doctors visits, school supplies, the whole thing. That’s totally enough, right?
7. So, you probably won’t be too shocked at the recent reports showing that over half of all fast food families are forced to rely on social safety net programs (like food stamps) because they don’t get paid enough to scrape by. But still.
8. Over half. It really shouldn’t be as big of a surprise after doing the math, but it is. The number is just so high.
9. And that’s not even the most messed up part. The fast food companies refuse to raise wages — they say they just can’t afford it.
Aw, poor wittle multinational megacorporations! 🙁
Since they won’t pay their workers enough to live on, taxpayers fork over $7 BILLION DOLLARS a year so that folks who work hard for a living can put food on the table. Can see a doctor. Can heat their home.
10. $7 BILLION DOLLARS that comes from taxpayers so McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s and the rest can line their own pockets.
11. I’ll say it again. We’re ALL picking up the tab so that the big, huge, incredibly-freaking-profitable fast food chains can keep wages down (and profits and executive pay up!).
12. McDonald’s alone made $5.46 BILLION in profits in 2012 and took $1.2 BILLION of US taxpayers money to cover the cost of their employees’ food, heat, and healthcare since they won’t.
13. But wait there’s more!
Yum! Brands, the company that owns Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC (that’s why you see those weird half Taco Bell/Pizza Huts — doesn’t explain the Doritos Locos Tacos, though. Not sure anything can explain that) made $1.6 BILLION last year and took advantage of $648 million in taxpayer funds so their employees could make ends meet. Yum!? More like yuck.
14. What else? Oh, Subway? Try Subsidies — they’re third on the list. $436 million from the US coffers to cover their low-calorie wages.
This is the correct response.
15. The list goes on and on.
Burger King, Wendy’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Dairy Queen, Little Caesar’s, Sonic and Domino’s round out the top 10 largest fast food chains. Together, the top 10 made $7.4 BILLION in profits last year, paid their CEOs $53 million, and benefited from $3.8 BILLION of US taxpayers’ money (here’s a summary of the reports) so that they could keep on paying their workers crap.
16. Yep. You could pay for a lot of schools with that kind of cash. So, how can we end this #FastFoodSwindle?
First, share this and make sure that everyone you know (on Facebook and Twitter anyway) knows about the outrageous hidden costs of fast food. Go ahead, say it.
17. Then, tell the fast food chains to pay their employees more so that they can cover their basic needs without being forced to rely on social safety net programs.
Don’t be this guy. No, wait — do be this guy.
18. So, do you want to do something about it?
Find out more here: Low Pay Is Not OK!