Guess who’s the worst offender of paying employees at or below poverty level wages while raking in billions of dollars in profit? Just take a wild guess.

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Despite the perception that minimum wage jobs are often held by teenage workers entering the job market, numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicate that 49 percent of minimum wage workers are adult women, many of whom have children.

With this as the backdrop, the National Employment Law Center (NELP) has published a list of the 50 U.S. companies who have the most low wage workers. While not all of these companies pay the exact minimum wage they all pay very close to the wage floor. As you can see by the list, the companies listed also share a common trait of being massive, successful companies making major profits. Perhaps their universally low labor costs have something to do with that trend?

There should be an organized, long-term boycott of every company on this list until they rectify these numbers. People are far too complacent when it comes to defending these companies with arguments like, “well it’s their business they should be able to make what they want.” Each of these corporations has positioned themselves as monopolies while abetting and encouraging the systematic dismantling of regulatory laws in the United States.

According to the United States Depatment of Labor the national minimum wage is a laughable $7.25. If you work full-time, 40 hours a week at the minimum wage level, which many of these companies pay (only because they’re forced to by law, many would pay less if they could), you annual income is $15,080 a year. Let me repeat that. If you work FULL-TIME 40 HOURS A WEEK, EVERY WEEK OF THE YEAR you will earn $15,080.

Here are the 2013 poverty guidelines according to the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

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So, if you’re a single parent with only one child, which MOST of these employees are, your annual wage leaves you a whopping $500 below the poverty line. It’s an outrage. Over the past 3o years we have been stripped of our self worth and sense of entitlement a productive member of society should take for granted.  This is our national embarrassment.

And you better hope your ass off that you or your child doesn’t get sick or need to see a doctor AND eat for that month because if you work at Wal-Mart or most of these other corporations you likely don’t even have healthcare. So Americans, what are we going to do about this?

Posted by James Poling

A socialist, tinkerer, thinker, question asker and all around curiosity seeker. If you'd like to reach me you can use the contact link above or email me at jamespoling [at] gmail [dot] com.

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