+

Amazon just gave its workers a huge raise after a big push from Bernie Sanders.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) and Amazon have had a long-standing beef.

Sanders has been on Jeff Bezos and his company for the way it treats many of its workers: low wages, inhumane working conditions and production demands that rarely trickle down to those who help make it one of the world’s two $1 trillion dollar corporations.


Well, Jeff Bezos heard Bernie’s points and decided to make a change, announcing that he’s raising the minimum wage for all full-time, part-time, temporary and seasonal employees with Amazon to $15.

The wage increase affects 250,000 full-time Amazon employees and more than 100,000 part-time and seasonal workers.

Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images.

It’s a huge development for Amazon and an even bigger win for the workers and Sanders himself.

But instead of gloating or pointing out where Amazon still needs to get better, Sanders showed the right way to respond by correctly praising Bezos during a press conference that was live-streamed on Facebook:

"Today, I want to give credit where credit is due and I want to congratulate Mr. Bezos for doing exactly the right thing," Sanders said.

"What Mr. Bezos today has done is not only enormously important for Amazon’s hundreds of thousands of employees, it could well be, and I think it will be, a shot heard around the world," Sanders added.

Sanders Responds to Amazon $15 Minimum Wage

Amazon announced it is raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour

Posted by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders on Tuesday, October 2, 2018

There’s still more work to be done. And even $15 an hour doesn't cut it.

A $15 hourly wage is more than double the federal minimum wage of $7.25 But it's still shockingly low when you crunch the numbers. A $15 hourly wage over a 40 hour week multiplied by 52 weeks is still only $31,200. And that's before taxes. And almost no one works a full week every single week of the year when you count vacation, sick days and other life events.

As this graphic from the National Low Income Housing Coalition shows, it's incredibly difficult to make rent in any state across the U.S. not just trendy urban centers like New York or Los Angeles.

National Low Income Housing Coalition

Sanders didn’t dance around his past disagreements with Bezos, noting that many of his corporation’s employees were forced to go on food stamps just to meet basic needs. But he pivoted today’s news to saying that if Amazon can do this, there’s no excuse for other major corporations like them, who rely on the efforts of low-wage workers.

"Mr. Bezos and Amazon are now leading the way but there is absolutely now no reason why other profitable corporations like Walmart, like the fast food industry, like retail in general, and other employees ... should not be paying their employees at least $15 an hour," the senator added.

If you work full-time, you shouldn’t need assistance just to get by.

The larger point Sanders is trying to make seems obvious to anyone who works full-time, regardless of their personal politics.

If you work 40 hours or more a week, you should make enough money to live a comfortable, basic existence. That means food, clothing and shelter.

As a society, we can debate what it means on the higher level in terms of education, healthcare and other so-called “benefits” that are increasingly enjoyed by fewer Americans.

But there should be no debate about whether those who are able to, and choose to work, are rewarded with wages that give them the basic dignity to live independent lives.

As Sanders said: "In this country, our standard should be that if you work 40-hours a week, you should not be living in poverty."

So, when someone like Jeff Bezos makes strides towards embracing that kind of philosophy, he should be praised. Shaming our leaders has its place. But so does praising them when they choose to learn, adapt and do the right thing.

All illustrations are provided by Soosh and used with permission.

I have plenty of space.

This article originally appeared on 04.09.16


It's hard to truly describe the amazing bond between dads and their daughters.

Being a dad is an amazing job no matter the gender of the tiny humans we're raising. But there's something unique about the bond between fathers and daughters.

Most dads know what it's like to struggle with braiding hair, but we also know that bonding time provides immense value to our daughters. In fact, studies have shown that women with actively involved fathers are more confident and more successful in school and business.

Keep ReadingShow less
Identity

This blind chef wore a body cam to show how she prepares dazzling dishes.

How do blind people cook? This "Masterchef" winner leans into her senses.

Image pulled from YouTube video.

Christine Ha competes on "Masterchef."

This article originally appeared on 05.26.17


There is one question chef Christine Ha fields more than any other.

But it's got nothing to do with being a "Masterchef" champion, New York Times bestselling author, and acclaimed TV host and cooking instructor.

The question: "How do you cook while blind?"

Keep ReadingShow less
The Prince Charles Cinema/Youtube

Brendan Fraser dressed as Rick O'Connell.

Brendan Fraser might be making the greatest career comeback ever, racking up accolades and award nominations for his dramatic, transformative role in “The Whale." But the OG Fraser fans (the ones who watch “Doom Patrol” solely to hear his voice and proudly pronounce his last name as Fray-zure, for this is the proper pronunciation) have known of his remarkable talent since the 90s, when he embodied the ultimate charming, dashing—and slightly goofball—Hollywood action lead.

Let us not forget his arguably most well known and beloved 90s character—Rick O’Connell from the “Mummy” franchise. Between his quippy one-liners, Indiana Jones-like adventuring skills and fabulous hair, what’s not to like?

During a double feature of “The Mummy” and “The Mummy Returns” in London, moviegoers got the ultimate surprise when who should walk in but Brendan Fraser himself, completely decked out in Rick O’Connell attire. The brown leather jacket. The scarf. Everything.

Keep ReadingShow less

Gordon Ramsay at play... work.

This article originally appeared on 04.22.15


Gordon Ramsay is not exactly known for being nice.

Or patient.

Or nurturing.

On his competition show "Hell's Kitchen," he belittles cooks who can't keep up. If people come to him with their problems, he berates them. If someone is struggling to get something right in the kitchen, he curses them out.

Keep ReadingShow less

This article originally appeared on 01.27.20


From 1940 to 1945, an estimated 1.3 million people were deported to Auschwitz, the largest complex of Nazi concentration camps. More than four out of five of those people—at least 1.1 million people—were murdered there.

On January 27, 1945, Soviet forces liberated the final prisoners from these camps—7,000 people, most of whom were sick or dying. Those of us with a decent public education are familiar with at least a few names of Nazi extermination facilities—Auschwitz, Dachau, Bergen-Belsen—but these are merely a few of the thousands (yes, thousands) of concentration camps, sub camps, and ghettos spread across Europe where Jews and other targets of Hitler's regime were persecuted, tortured, and killed by the millions.

Keep ReadingShow less
Health

What I realized about feminism after my male friend was disgusted by tampons at a party.

"After all these years, my friend has probably forgotten, but I never have."

Photo by Josefin on Unsplash

It’s okay men. You don’t have to be afraid.

This article originally appeared on 08.12.16


Years ago, a friend went to a party, and something bothered him enough to rant to me about it later.

And it bothered me that he was so incensed about it, but I couldn't put my finger on why. It seemed so petty for him to be upset, and even more so for me to be annoyed with him.

Recently, something reminded me of that scenario, and it made more sense. I'll explain.

Keep ReadingShow less