5 successful corporations show what can happen when employees are paid a living wage.

In the U.S., people have a lot of choices about where they can shop, eat, and be entertained.

This means we can reward companies that are good to their employees by giving them our business and punish those that pay low wages by shopping at the competition.

Here are a list of five companies that are doing right by their employees and are worthy of receiving our hard-earned dollars.

They’re also great places for people who are looking for a job to consider.


Photo by Sota/Flickr

1. In-N-Out

Ask someone from the west coast what their favorite burger is and they will undoubtedly say “In-N-Out!”

Well, not only does it make great food, but it’s a wonderful place to work, too. In 2018, Glassdoor ranked it as the 4th best place to work in the entire country.

The average In-N-Out cashier makes about $12 an hour, while in comparison, a McDonald’s cashier only makes around $8.

The company is also known for promoting managers from within, creating job growth opportunities for its employees.

In 2012, In-N-Out store managers made more than $120,000 on average. By comparison, the median pay for food service managers across restaurants nationwide is around $48,000 per year, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The company also gives great benefit packages, including: retirement accounts, health plans, and three weeks of paid vacation a year for those who've been with the company more than six years.

Photo by Mike Mozart/Flickr

2. Costco

According to Glassdoor, the average entry-level wage at Costco is $13 an hour and most of its employees receive health benefits and pension plans.

One reason why Costo pays more than the average warehouse retailer is because it believes its employees should be compensated for their hard labor.

In 2016, Costco increased it’s entry-level wage from $11.50 or $12 an hour. “We want to be the premium at all levels,” Costco CFO Richard Galanti told CNN Money.

"And frankly in some markets, this is a physical challenging, a physically challenging job," Galanti said. "You're on your feet, you're lifting cases, you're pushing carts at these entry level jobs. And so we thought it was time to do it.”

Photo by Mike Mozart/Flickr

3. Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe's offers a fair wage (starting salaries are around $13 an hour), along with health and vacation benefits and relatively flexible schedules. This flexibility is part of the company's commitment to healthy employees.

Employees get their schedules far ahead of time so they can schedule their lives outside of work. They also allow employees to work from home when possible.

This commitment to health also means that its employees receive paid sick days and paternal leave.

“When people have some level of control, it diminishes workplace stress and the challenges that come with balancing home, family, work — simultaneously,” Casey Chosewood of the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health told HuffPost. “That is extremely important in decreasing stress.”

Photo by Jack Kennard/Flickr

4. Starbucks

Bad pun alert: working at Starbucks really has its perks.

Starbucks has great benefit programs and, unlike most employers, it offers them to people who work as little as 20 hours a week.

Starbucks offers bonuses, 401(k) matching, discounted stock purchase options, adoption assistance, college tuition reimbursement, health coverage for families, and of course, free coffee.

Photo by Brian Kelley/Flickr

5. Ben & Jerry’s

Hippie Vermont ice cream entrepreneurs Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield are definitely committed to giving their employees a living wage. As of 2015, full-time employees were paid $16.92 an hour, more than double the federal minimum wage.

The company regularly recalculates its wage based on the cost of living in Vermont.

Full-time employees also get health benefits and a fun, dog-friendly office with a nap room, massage room, and lots of free ice cream (three pints per person, per day, to be precise).

Pexels.com
True

June 26, 2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the signing of the United Nations Charter. Think of the Charter as the U.N.'s wedding vows, in which the institution solemnly promises to love and protect not one person, but the world. It's a union most of us can get behind, especially in light of recent history. We're less than seven months into 2020, and already it's established itself as a year of reckoning. The events of this year—ecological disaster, economic collapse, political division, racial injustice, and a pandemic—the complex ways those events feed into and amplify each other—have distressed and disoriented most of us, altering our very experience of time. Every passing month creaks under the weight of a decade's worth of history. Every quarantined day seems to bleed into the next.

But the U.N. was founded on the principles of peace, dignity, and equality (the exact opposite of the chaos, degradation, and inequality that seem to have become this year's ringing theme). Perhaps that's why, in its 75th year, the institution feels all the more precious and indispensable. When the U.N. proposed a "global conversation" in January 2020 (feels like thousands of years ago), many leapt to participate—200,000 within three months. The responses to surveys and polls, in addition to research mapping and media analysis, helped the U.N. pierce through the clamor—the roar of bushfire, the thunder of armed conflict, the ceaseless babble of talking heads—to actually hear what matters: our collective human voice.

Keep Reading Show less

Every murder of an innocent person is tragic, but the cold-blooded killing of a child is too heinous to even think about. So when a man walks up to a 5-year-old riding his bike in broad daylight and shoots him in the head in front of his young sisters, it's completely reasonable that people would be horrified. It's an unthinkable and unforgivable act.

Cannon Hinnant didn't deserve to die like that. His parents didn't deserve to lose him like that. His sisters didn't deserve to be scarred for life like that. We can all agree that a horrible tragedy in every way.

His murderer—Hinnant's dad's next door neighbor, Darius Sessoms—deserved to be rounded up, arrested, and charged for the killing. And he was, within hours. He deserves to be punished to the full extent of the law, and history indicates that he assuredly will be. The system is working exactly as it's supposed to in this case. Nothing can be done to bring Cannon back, but justice is being served.

So why is #SayHisName trending with this story, when that hashtag has long been used in the movement for Black Lives? And why is #JusticeForCannon being shared when justice is already happening in this case? Why is #ChildrensLivesMatter a thing, when there's never been any question that that's the case?

Keep Reading Show less
Mozilla
True
Firefox

When I found out I was pregnant in October 2018, I had planned to keep the news a secret from family for a little while — but my phone seemed to have other ideas.

Within just a few hours of finding out the news, I was being bombarded with ads for baby gear, baby clothes and diapers on Facebook, Instagram and pretty much any other site I visited — be it my phone or on my computer.

Good thing my family wasn't looking over my shoulder while I was on my phone or my secret would have been ruined.

I'm certainly not alone in feeling like online ads can read your mind.

When I started asking around, it seemed like everyone had their own similar story: Brian Kelleher told me that when he and his wife met, they started getting ads for wedding rings and bridal shops within just a few weeks. Tech blogger Snezhina Piskov told me that she started getting ads for pocket projectors after discussing them in Messenger with her colleagues. Meanwhile Lauren Foley, a writer, told me she started getting ads for Happy Socks after seeing one of their shops when she got off the bus one day.

When online advertising seems to know us this well, it begs the question: are our phones listening to us?

Keep Reading Show less

I saw this poster today and I was going to just let it go, but then I kept feeling tugged to say something.

Melanie Cholish/Facebook

While this poster is great to bring attention to the issue of child trafficking, it is a "shocking" picture of a young girl tied up. It has that dark gritty feeling. I picture her in a basement tied to a dripping pipe.

While that sounds awful, it's important to know that trafficking children in the US is not all of that. I can't say it never is—I don't know. What I do know is most young trafficked children aren't sitting in a basement tied up. They have families, and someone—usually in their family—is trafficking them.

Keep Reading Show less