A new Brookings Institute report shows 53 million Americans are low-wage workers. Martha Ross, one of the report’s authors, talked with KERA’s Justin Martin about the struggles these workers face.


On defining a low-wage worker:

We looked at everyone who was 18 to 64 who had worked in the past year. We cut out some college students since they are less likely to depend on their jobs to support themselves and their families. we also cut out people who are self-employed.

Then to figure out what’s the wage that marks someone who’s low-wage worker from someone who’s not, our national threshold was $16.03 an hour, which is two-thirds of the median wage of a full time, full year male worker.

But then, we adjusted it by place

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