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The Boston Globe

Opinion

The Podium

Don’t use children to subsidize low-wage economy

We are seeing a historic rejection of the status-quo by working men and women today. Workers are speaking up and organizing for better wages and working conditions. But if you listen carefully to the many voices of fast-food, retail, and personal services workers, you’ll hear the voices of children. Because when parents are at the mercy of a labor market dominated by low-wage fast food and retail jobs, their kids are too.

When mothers and fathers must accommodate any demand employers make on them, they lose control over their daily lives and can’t tend to their families’ basic needs. In fact, our research finds that low-quality jobs are harming families in both the near and long-term, prolonging poverty and triggering higher dropout rates and obesity among adolescents.

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