Los Angeles Times: Stepping Up From Flipping Burgers
Fast-food restaurant employees across the country walked off their jobs for a day last week, the largest in an escalating series of protests against the low wages paid by some of the nation's most popular restaurant chains. The workers' complaints throw a spotlight on the broader challenges policymakers face on this Labor Day, the sixth since the housing market collapse sent the country into an economic tailspin. The problem isn't just that entry-level jobs have less buying power than they used to; it's also that too few people are moving on from those jobs into better careers.
More important than entry-level pay, though, is workers' ability to advance into higher-income jobs. A report by the Pew Charitable Trusts shows that 43% of those born to families in the bottom fifth of U.S. incomes never rise to a higher rung, and 70% don't make it to the median income. That lack of mobility belies the American self-image as a land of opportunity. And while Pew's polls show that the public wants government to promote upward mobility, combating the entrenched, intergenerational poverty in this country presents an enormous challenge.
Read the full article at latimes.com.
- Economic Mobility Project