There is not a state in this country where a living wage is less than $20/hr. Yet people are all up in arms over the idea of raising the minimum wage to $15/hr. They think people need to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and get a better job, when in many states cheapskate Walmart is the biggest employer.
I live in a state where the minimum wage is $11/hr, the living wage is $26.97/hr, and the safety net eligibility poverty line is artificially kept low, at around $20,000/yr, for a single mother with 1 child, which translates to a full time job of less than the legal minimum wage, at $9.61/hr. Even if she managed to rise up and get a promotion with the biggest employer in the state, to a position of a customer service MANAGER, the average wage for that position in my state is $18/hr, which is still much less than the $26.97/hr needed to live here, but well over the amount necessary to kick her off practically every government safety net program.
Don’t kid yourself. Slavery is alive and well in the US. Rather than owning their slaves, now they are rented, with low wages, black, white, and every other color of slaves. And the government helps corporations keep on doing it.