'These people don't make enough money to live but they don't qualify for assistance,' says Anne in the video.
In America, 23 states and Washington DC raised their minimum wages in January this year. The new wages range from $9.95 per hour in Montana to $16.10 in DC, as reported by CNBC. However, a TikTok user Ceridwen Anne with the username - @locrpg, explained in a video how minimum wages are not enough for an individual to have a normal life in America. In the video, responding to one of the comments, which said, "It's like you'll have 1000 excuses," Anne says, "It's 1000 reasons that you didn't consider."
They continue, "If you never have been American poor, you don't have the right to talk to people about being American poor, but let's look at the numbers anyway." Anne goes on to explain how the budget for a person with minimum wage works. "We are saying no healthcare, no insurance, no car, no transportation, no debt, no cleaning, no cellphone, no internet, no pets, and no fun. We're just looking at our wage minus our taxes minus utility minus food and that's what we have left over to budget," says the person. "If you are working 40 hours a week in America at minimum wage and you are not paying any state taxes just bedroom apartments, no extra utility, just your electricity and water and you are eating $10 a day. You are $11,979 and ¢60 short," says Anne in the video.
They then go on to say how it works for people who have a roommate living with them. "If you get a roommate, you are still $1179 and ¢60 short. That's fine. Because you can't even qualify for a one-bedroom apartment because you have to make three times the rent in order to qualify. So that would mean you would have to have two adults who were each making $30,600 a year. That is more than twice the minimum wage," says the TikTok user. They add, "So for these states where they have a $10 minimum wage or $12 minimum wage, that is still not sufficient for two adults to rent a one-bedroom apartment. And that is still not counting being able to buy toilet paper and toothbrushes."
Anne concludes the video by saying, "So tell me, how are we supposed to budget our way out of capitalism? Go back to school and get a degree so that we can get a better job. These people make too much money to receive most federal assistance. These people make too much money to receive aid. These people don't make enough money to live, but they don't qualify for assistance. So how are they supposed to save? How are they supposed to better their lives?" they say.
The TikTok video has gained about 47k views and 6789 likes. It is captioned, "You can't budget your way out of capitalism." Many on the social media channel agreed with what Anne shared. @victoriasteichen commented, "Not to mention that even having a degree isn’t going to get too much above minimum wage, and if you have any limitations, good luck." @wolfnoggin wrote, "I can’t even begin to tell you how cathartic it feels for somebody to break it down brass tacks like this- this is ALL TRUE." @dokkabi97 pointed out, "I get paid biweekly making 15$/hr, and usually get about 62hrs — my take-home pay after taxes is only 785$ (using my current stub) & that’s before the bill." @shelleyskinney pointed out, "The cost of housing has so far outrun wages. I grew up American poor. Pretty much gotta work 2+ jobs and hustle hard."