Browse By

McDonalds Advises its Workers: Get a Second Job and don’t buy Food or our Health Insurance

As Brendan Kiley notes, McDonalds has created a special budgeting guide for its employees. Here’s just one page from the guide:

McDonalds Sample Monthly Budget: Unliveable

Kiley has noticed that there isn’t any spot for food in McDonalds’ sample budget for its employees, that heat won’t be a necessity either, but that a second job will be necessary. Why? Because the amounts specified in this budget just aren’t enough to get by, at least not safely.

There’s more detail worth notice beyond the rhetorical level, because McDonalds’ sample budget isn’t rhetorical. That $1,105 figure for monthly income isn’t just some arbitrary sample figure. It comes from somewhere. According to Glass Door, the average McDonalds pay for a cashier or crew member is $7.72 an hour, a few pennies above minimum wage. If a person works full time of 40 hours a week at McDonalds in a typical month (which has 4 1/3 weeks), their monthly pay will come out to $1,338 before payroll taxes. After payroll taxes (check the figures here) a full-time McDonalds worker will take home between $1,000 and $1,100 a month.

With that in mind, McDonalds’ own sample budget confirms that, without a second job on top of full-time work at McDonalds, it’s not possible to make a personal budget work — even if, as Kiley points out, you don’t eat or pay for any heat in the winter.

And if we’re going to be sticklers about it, McDonalds’ own corporate benefits package for 2013 declares that its least-expensive health care package for a single employee with no children costs $14 a week, or $61 for the average 4 1/3 week month — not the $20/month noted in that dreamy corporate sample budget for employees. That basic health care option is far from a full insurance plan, covering only up to $2,000 in medical expenses per year, per person. If an employee has a medical emergency or needs medication, McInsurance won’t cut the mustard. What if an employee has kids? Add on more expense. What if that employee or her kids needs glasses or wants to go the the dentist? Forget it: dental and vision aren’t included in the insurance plan. If you want those options, you’ll have to pay more, more, more — more than there’s room for in the sample budget for McDonalds employees.

What else do you notice that’s missing from this budget? I invite you to chime in with what you know — but even without this additional information, it’s clear from McDonalds’ own documents for its employees that it just doesn’t pay a living wage. This isn’t just a McDonald’s problem — this is what life looks like for a person who works full time near the minimum wage.

18 thoughts on “McDonalds Advises its Workers: Get a Second Job and don’t buy Food or our Health Insurance”

  1. Dave says:

    Thanks for finding this,Jim. Indeed McDonald’s is not paying a living wage. If they did, even with a total re-structuring of their shareholder agreements they would probably be in for dramatic price increases which would make their product, a staple of America’s poor, out of reach for many.

    The above budget is something for a kid, not an adult. What if an employee has kids, you ask. Well, I kinda think McDonalds feels little pressure on that point, as they know what she makes and that she is likely eligible for many thousands of dollars in benefits – housing, EBT, Medicaid, etc. One question I think worthwhile to ask is what is McDonald’s obligation to their employees when they have a single mother of three working side by side with a high school gal who’s just working for clothes money?

    You know how I can yammer on about my affinity for small business, so I am no friend of McDonalds. Just trying to think like they do in order to understand them. They are, in a sense, in partnership with the government, a truly ghastly arrangement which allows employees at the bottom to go underpaid, yet still be eligible for benefits of all kinds. This is one aspect of Keynsian Economics, (Marxism minus the steroids) which has many adherents in both parties and the White House, so it is actually being institutionalised with every act of Congress signed by the Prez. Without the continuation of the American Revolution I see no change in sight for low wage earners.

  2. Pingback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive On Minimum Wage | News Vault
  3. Trackback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive On Minimum Wage | News Vault
  4. Pingback: McDonald's Can't Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | Daily News
  5. Trackback: McDonald's Can't Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | Daily News
  6. Pingback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | PopularResistance.Org
  7. Trackback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | PopularResistance.Org
  8. Pingback: McDonald’s Literally Can’t Imagine How Workers Survive : All Honesty LLC
  9. Trackback: McDonald’s Literally Can’t Imagine How Workers Survive : All Honesty LLC
  10. Pingback: Your Wednesday Chryco Auto News Digest! | Chryco Auto News Digest
  11. Trackback: Your Wednesday Chryco Auto News Digest! | Chryco Auto News Digest
  12. Pingback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | Clarifications
  13. Trackback: McDonald’s Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | Clarifications
  14. Pingback: McDonald's Jobs Are Drive-Thru, Not Dead End | RocketNews
  15. Trackback: McDonald's Jobs Are Drive-Thru, Not Dead End | RocketNews
  16. Pingback: Richard Zombeck: 1 Percent to the Rest of Us: Suck it Up Losers | Business news
  17. Trackback: Richard Zombeck: 1 Percent to the Rest of Us: Suck it Up Losers | Business news
  18. Pingback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | unitenews
  19. Trackback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage | unitenews
  20. Pingback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage « The Daily Blog
  21. Trackback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage « The Daily Blog
  22. Pingback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage « LiveNews.co.nz
  23. Trackback: McDonald’s (USA) Can’t Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage « LiveNews.co.nz
  24. Pingback: McDonald's não consegue saber como é que os seus trabalhadores sobrevivem com salário mínimo.
  25. Trackback: McDonald's não consegue saber como é que os seus trabalhadores sobrevivem com salário mínimo.
  26. Ryan says:

    McDonald’s crew members aren’t aloud to work 40 hours a weeks they are only aloud to work 30 hours a week.

    1. Jim Cook says:

      … which would make their personal budgets even smaller, and McDonalds’ idealization of their budgets even more unrealistic.

  27. A says:

    You expect me to believe you can’t eat with $900 unspecified money for “other” and “spending” in the budget? I spend half that on food AND gas and I drive 25 miles each way already 5 days a week to my job.

  28. Jim Cook says:

    A,

    Thanks for writing.

    A) What about your second job? That budget supposes you have a second job.
    B) If you only drive to work and never anywhere else, and your 250 miles per week is in a car with 25 miles per gallon and gas is $2.50 a gallon, you’ll be spending $100 a month on gas alone, for the first job alone. Add another $100 for your second job — or remove the second job’s income.
    C) Then explain your $250/month on food — less than $10 a day — to make up the $450/month you claim. How nutritious is that food?

  29. Pingback: McDonald's Can't Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage - The Atlantic
  30. Trackback: McDonald's Can't Figure Out How Its Workers Survive on Minimum Wage - The Atlantic

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Psst... what kind of person doesn't support pacifism?

Fight the Republican beast!