GONE are the days when we all dreamed of rushing to be an adult: chasing the privilege of being able to legally drink liquor, watch aged-specific movies at cinemas, be eligible for job applications, or independently spend personal treats and luxuries.
Adulthood means fun and easy, or so we thought, my fellow teenage Gen-Z’s.
Navigating life financially isn’t just a walk in the park, it’s far from the enjoyment we all experience at that place. Certainly, Gen Zs who are investing their blood, sweat, and tears to earn every penny per hour couldn’t agree more.
Service work is typically a go-to gain experience for students and graduates alike. In a brief discussion with two of my friends separately, one shared with me that she decided to work at a local fast food chain to fill in more space on her resume. The other worked at another location but a similar fast food chain for additional allowance. Both told me that their payroll, given twice a month, is only good enough if spent on personal wants.
Our conversation gets deeper into the issue of low minimum wages. The friend who wanted to gain work experience mentioned that the very low daily pay per hour is not proportional to the effort and hard work of service workers. Another bad news is the hourly rate doesn’t increase no matter how many years you have been in the job position.
Here’s the gist: isn’t it sad that there are a number of people burdened by this bare minimum wage? Yes, it can buy you personal needs—just personal wants not personal needs.
It’s simply unfair. Imagine working straight for hours but it could barely sustain to put food on the table, purchase other basic needs, and pay bills. Sadly, this is a familiar situation for those who fully depend on service work wages for everyday living. They are not getting the supposed pay they deserve.
Adult life surely isn’t easy just thinking that financial dependence is stressful. But, I believe that such challenging life phase could be alleviated if there is financial security—which begins if employment pay is adequate.
It’s an issue that has been sitting in the corners for years. Yet, a lot of people still experience its affliction. No matter how we tell people to work hard, believing hard work equates to getting out from the lower class, it’s not gonna happen. It will never happen if the issue of minimum wages will not be addressed.
Marianne Izabelle T. Reyes has been living life through thick and thin for twenty-one years, it’s more than enough for her to gain awareness of the issues experienced by people from all walks of life. She takes a bold step this time, to publicize her opinion writings, because why not?
March 10, 2023
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