Oct. 29

In response to David Rutherford's letter regarding "living wages," I would ask Rutherford when the last time was that he worked for minimum wage?

My husband and I make significantly more than the minimum wage, and this has entitled us to a modest starter home, a five-year-old car, and the ability to pay our bills every month. Hardly ludicrous luxuries. Considering this, I can sympathize with the struggles of those on the poverty line (i.e., minimum-wage workers), and where we were not too long ago as young newlyweds and struggling students.

I applaud the bakery in question for taking care of its employees, and would like to point out that this is not simply an altruistic "redistribution of wealth" but a smart business move. It is no secret that easing financial worries at home can make a job more rewarding and employees more productive; my husband and I have both in recent years moved up pay grids doing the same jobs as before, and are happier, more productive workers due to the appreciation of our contributions at work.

In the tough economic climate of today, it is not the time to turn on each other in a "survival of the fittest." Societies are judged by how we treat the least among us. I think it is unbecoming of us as humans to suggest that those who make a living serving the fortunate among us at our favourite restaurants and tallying up our consumer goods at local stores are working any less hard than the rest of us, or are any less deserving of the ability to have a roof over their heads and food on their families' tables.

Sarah Daigen