US workers struggle to feed themselves and their families

Many US workers struggle to feed themselves and their families, study shows


LosAngelesTimes, Oct 17, 2016

Seven in 10 University of California workers in clerical, administrative and support services struggle to put adequate food on the table, according to a new Occidental College study.

The study, released Monday, found that 45% of 2,890 employees surveyed throughout the 10-campus UC system went hungry at times. An additional 25% had to reduce the quality of their diet.


The problems persisted even though most of those surveyed were full-time employees with college degrees and average earnings of $22 an hour.


Peter Dreier, an Occidental professor of politics who conducted the study with two colleagues and the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 2010, said “This is a systemwide problem; it exists on every campus, This is not a handful of people who happen to be down on their luck. They need a living wage so they can afford to feed their families.”


The food problems among UC workers were even higher than those found among students in a separate university study in June.The survey of nearly 9,000 UC students found that 42% did not have a consistent source of high-quality, nutritious food.


UC President Janet Napolitano, in conjunction with the student survey’s release, announced an effort to expand the fight against campus malnutrition in what officials said would be the nation’s most comprehensive, systematic plan to tackle the problem.


Campus projects include expanding food pantries, emergency funding, budget cooking lessons and donations of excess dollars on student meal plans.


Dreier said California’s high housing costs make it difficult for workers to feed themselves and their families adequately. A 2013 California Budget Project study found that single-parent families with two children needed $74,000 annually, or nearly a $36-an-hour wage, just to make ends meet. A two-parent household with two children needed about $61,000, while a single adult needed about $33,000.


Joseph Meyer, a 31-year-old administrative assistant at UC Berkeley, earns nearly $20 an hour but said he skips breakfast and sometimes additional meals to have enough money for his asthma medications. His $1,150 monthly rent eats up more than half of his $2,100 monthly take-home pay.


Catherine Cobb made just under $25,000 annually as a housing coordinator and medical administrative assistant at UC Irvine from 2001 to 2014. That wasn’t enough to feed her and her son, so she would furtively take food from university events. A friend noticed her struggles and began buying her lunch.


The study by Occidental College’s Urban and Environmental Policy Institute also found:


— About 9 in 10 single-parent households reported food insecurity.

— Food insecurity rates were higher among women (71.3%) than men (65.8%).

— About 8 of 10 African Americans and Latinos, and 6 of 10 whites and Asians struggled with food insecurity.

— Nearly 70% had difficulty concentrating on work at times because of hunger.

— About 80% had to choose between buying food and paying rent or utilities.


In Russia, “me-too Yankees” and professional CIA liars — who constantly appear on Russian tv – blatantly distort life in the USA. Over and over, they boast about the “high” salaries of American workers – and even the “luxury” of US unemployment benefits. These outrageous distortions amount to outright lies. And they are (almost) never challenged.

Note that a typical US rent (see above) of $1,150 amounts to about 74,000 rubles a month! And this does NOT include the additional cost of electricity, gas, water, garbage collection, heating, insurance, etc. Add to this astronomical medical costs and health insurance, high taxes for working people, grossly inadequate public transportation in the US which virtually requires workers to furnish their own expensive transportation, etc. etc.

All this in the US of A – which over decades and centuries has stolen more from other countries than any other nation in world history. The essence of US imperialism is virtually never discussed in Russia.

Meanwhile, someone like myself who knows the realities of American life is banned by the CIA – acting through its puppet FSB – from appearing in the mass media to explain these facts of American life.


Правительство США жестоко нарушило мои права человека при проведении кампании террора, которая заставила меня покинуть свою родину и получить политическое убежище в СССР. См. книгу «Безмолвный террор — История политических гонений на семью в США» — «Silent Terror: One family’s history of political persecution in the United States» —

Правительство США еще нарушает мои права, в течении более 12 лет отказывается от выплаты причитающейся мне пенсии по старости. Властители США воруют пенсию!! Всё это — ещё доказательство, что настоящий действующий закон в США — Закон джунглей.

ФСБ — Федеральная служба «безопасности» России — вслед за позорным, предавшим страну предшественником КГБ, выполняет приказы секретного, кровавого хозяина (boss) — американского ЦРУ (CIA). Среди таких «задач» — мне запретить выступать в СМИ и не пропускать большинства отправленных мне комментариев. А это далеко не всё…

Арнольд Локшин, политэмигрант из США

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