Police and firefighters are now officially and publicly part of the 99% in Scranton, Pa. Mayor Chris Doherty decidedly gnored a federal judge’s injunction, and moved on with a plan to reduce the pay of city workers to the federal minimum wage starting Friday.
The Mayor’s reasoning is that the city is broke, however, his salary is intact. As MSN.com reports, firefighters and police officers – two of the most dangerous and necessary jobs — will be rewarded with the same pay rate as an employee for McDonald’s. Golly Mayor, I sure hope your house doesn’t catch on fire while the city’s firefighter’s are on ‘break.’ You get what you pay for. Incidentally, the image in this post is of an actual fire, extinguished by Scranton’s firefighters. I wouldn’t walk into that for the pay rate of $36 an hour, much less, that of a burger flipper.
The pay rate was slashed from between $19 – $36 per hour to a mere $7.25. This brings up a good topic. Republicans have stated that they want minimum wage taken down. These firefighters and police officers have families, homes with mortgages or rent, bills to pay, food to put on the table and now, the most drastic assault is unleashed upon them in one day’s time – for an “indefinite” period.
If drastic cuts are to be made affecting 398 necessary workers, start from the top – that’s you Mayor. Your salary is intact. For now.
Think Progress reports, “Congressional Republicans repeatedly blocked efforts to extend aid to the states that would have helped shore up their budgets and keep these workers on payroll. In the case of Scranton, such aid may have helped the city actually pay its workers a living wage instead of a federal minimum that hasn’t been raised since 2006 and has less buying power than it had in 1968.”
I’m not going to Google the Mayor’s political leanings – left or right, he’s wrong.