05-25-2018  11:50 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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Attorney General Forms Hate Crime Task Force

The task force will study hate-motivated crimes and review existing legal protections for victims ...

Portland Art Museum Celebrates Art Museum Day with Free Admission on May 25

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Hit-and-run driver strikes pedestrians in downtown Portland

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Former NAACP leader exposed as white faces fraud charges

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Racism After Graduation May Just Be What's on the Menu

Dr. Julianne Malveaux says that for our young millennials, racism is inevitable ...

Prime Minister Netanyahu Shows Limits of Israel’s Democracy

Bill Fletcher, Jr. on racial politics in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s uneven treatment of African immigrants ...

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...


Former NAACP leader exposed as white faces fraud charges

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A former NAACP leader in Washington state whose life unraveled after she was exposed as a white woman pretending to be black has been charged with welfare fraud.Nkechi Diallo, known as Rachel Dolezal before she legally changed her name in 2016, was charged this week...

Students hand back in yearbook after racial slur is pictured

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Students at a coastal Georgia high school are being asked to hand back in their yearbooks after a racial slur made for some bad memories.The Savannah-Chatham County school district tells news outlets that the publisher has recalled the Windsor Forest High School yearbook...

Column: Jack Johnson's biggest crime was being black

Jack Johnson's biggest crime was being an unrepentant black man who beat up white men for a living.High-flying and flamboyant, he refused to live by the unwritten rules of American society in the early 1900s. That made him a target, and that eventually cost him his freedom after being convicted of...


Weinstein faces sex charges amid #MeToo reckoning

NEW YORK (AP) — It was the moment the #MeToo movement had been waiting for: Harvey Weinstein in handcuffs.His face pulled in a strained smile and his hands locked behind his back, the once-powerful Hollywood figure emerged from a police station Friday facing rape and criminal sex act...

The Latest: Weinstein takes books on theater, film to arrest

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest on the sexual misconduct probe of film producer Harvey Weinstein (all times local):11:40 a.m.Harvey Weinstein was in and out of custody so quickly in his rape case, he probably didn't have time to read the books he brought with him.The film mogul carried three...

Weinstein turns himself in holding 2 entertainment bios

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NOT REAL NEWS: A look at what didn't happen this week

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For CEOs, .7 million a year is just middle of the pack

NEW YORK (AP) — Chief executives at the biggest public companies got an 8.5 percent raise last year,...

Former NAACP leader exposed as white faces fraud charges

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A former NAACP leader in Washington state whose life unraveled after she was exposed...

Putin says US exit from Iran deal could trigger instability

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin warned Friday that the U.S. exit from the...

Explosion at Indian restaurant in Canada wounds 15 people

TORONTO (AP) — An explosion caused by a homemade bomb ripped through an Indian restaurant where children...

Netherlands, Australia hold Russia liable for downing MH17

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A day after international prosecutors said they had unequivocal evidence of...

Nancy Mccarthy of The Skanner

To live a decent life in Washington, it costs a single adult $10.77 an hour. Yet one-third of all job openings pay less than that, according to a study conducted by a Seattle organization.

"Searching for Work That Pays: The 2005 Northwest Job Gap Study" determined that the "Northwest is not creating living-wage jobs for all those who need them." When families cannot earn what they need to survive, the study notes, "many are forced to make difficult choices between adequate health care, balanced nutrition and paying the bills."

The study was prepared by the Northwest Federation of Community Organizations, a regional federation of four statewide, community-based social and economic organizations. It encompassed Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana. Of the four states, Oregon and Washington had the highest living-wage requirement to pay for day-to-day needs.

A "living wage" is based on what is needed to meet basic needs and maintain some ability to deal with emergencies and plan ahead, according to the study. To determine the costs in each state, the federation used data collected by federal and state agencies, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, the U.S. Department of Transportation and statewide child care surveys.

Items included in a family's budget included housing and utilities; transportation; health care; child care; household, clothing and personal expenses; savings; and state and federal taxes.

In Washington, a living wage was determined to be for:
• Single adult: $10.77 an hour, or $22,402 yearly (at 2,080 hours per year);
• Single adult with one child: $16.83 an hour, or $35,011 yearly;
• Single adult with two children: $22.35 an hour, or $46,486 yearly;
• Two adults, one of whom is working, with two children: $20.64 an hour, or $42,921 yearly; and
• Two adults (two working), with two children $28.32 an hour (the combined wages of both working adults needs to total this amount), or $58,907 yearly.

It costs just slightly less to live in Washington than in Oregon, except for those living in King County, the study indicates. While a living wage for a single adult in Washington averages the same as Oregon's — $10.77 an hour — King County residents must earn $11.89 an hour to survive. A single adult with two children in King County should earn $25.35 an hour — $3 an hour more than for the same households throughout Washington; for them, it takes $22.35.

The living wages for Oregon residents are:
• A single adult: $10.77 an hour, or $22,404 yearly (at 2,080 hours per year);
• A single adult with one child: $17.36 hourly, or $36,102 yearly;
• A single adult with two children: $22.37 hourly, $46,531 yearly;
• Two adults, one of whom is working, with two children: $21.17 hourly, or $44,041 yearly;
• Two adults, both working, with two children: $28.72 hourly, or $59,732 yearly.

But job seekers in both Oregon and Washington are finding that much of the time the available jobs don't pay enough to support a household. In Oregon, 38 percent of all job openings pay less than the $10.77 hourly wage required by a single adult. For the single adult with two children who needs $22.37 an hour, 85 percent of the available jobs don't meet those standards.

The situation is only slightly better in Washington: 32 percent of the available job openings pay less than the $10.77 hourly required by a single adult, and 77 percent pay less than the $22.35 needed by an adult with two children.

Despite the lack of pay, however, competition exists for jobs. In Oregon, six people are seeking the same job that pays at least $10.77 an hour, and in Washington an average of four people are vying for that job. For jobs paying at least $22.37 an hour, the living wage for a single adult with two children in Oregon, there are 26 jobseekers on average; in Washington, there are 12.

Paying for health care is at the core of the problem in keeping up with the cost of living, said Will Pittz, regional organizer for the Northwest Federation of Community Organizations. Pittz is one of the three authors of the study.
"What we know is that the costs of living are rising particularly because the cost of health care is rising much faster than wages," Pittz said. "We have a situation where there will be more and more people who won't be able to pay for their basic needs."

Two things need to happen, he said: Government needs to expand health care options and employers need to be accountable to their employees and provide access to health care.

Even if a company does provide health insurance, at least one-third of the employees aren't covered either because they can't afford the premium they have to pay or they aren't eligible because they are part-time or temporary workers, the study says.

In Oregon, 40 percent of the nonelderly population does not have employer-based health insurance, according to the study. Of those, 7 percent purchase private health insurance, which often doesn't cover vision, dental, mental health or substance abuse treatment; 14 percent are covered by Medicaid; 1 percent are covered by Medicare; and 18 percent go uninsured. The statistics are similar in Washington.

Minorities also are disproportionately represented among the uninsured, the study notes. Nationally, while only 14.5 percent of Whites are uninsured, 36 percent of Latinos, 21 percent of African Americans and 20 percent of people of other races go without insurance. The study concludes that the disparities can be attributed to the "segregation of people of color into low-wage occupations and job sectors where fewer employers insure their workers."

Government also needs to expand health care coverage for those who earn minimum wages, said Pittz, who noted that the Oregon Health Plan is an example of what other states could do.

"There's a huge and growing gap between employer-supported and government supplied health care," he said. When they are trying to decide between eating and paying health insurance, "one of the things people tend to trade off is health care," Pittz added.

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