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This is my letter to the editor, sent to my local papers as it is a local issue in a way. However, I imagine this kind of thing is happening all over the U.S.

Things I would do if I made a Living Wage:
I am not at the poverty line now, nor would making a Living Wage make me rich, but my life would be different if I was not consistently being short changed as I have been for the past 6-8 years. It’s kind of embarrassing to write this, but I’m doing it because I'm sure there are others like me.
list below the orange squiggle...

1.    I would replace my clothes when they had holes that could no longer be mended. Perhaps I would occasionally treat myself to a made in the USA organic cotton piece.
2.    I would get my wobbly rear bike tire fixed.
3.    I would still be buying groceries economically, but would be able to do it out of my checking account and not ever use my credit card.
4.    I would have the two unusable light fixtures in my home fixed.
5.    I would get my cats vaccinated on time.
6.    I would take all the supplements that control my blood pressure regularly.  Not being so worried about paying the bills might also help my blood pressure.
7.    I might consider cable TV or dish again, honestly, I don’t miss it that much, but my sons do.
8.    I would be able to get car repairs done in one trip, instead of having to pick the most urgent one and letting the rest wait.
9.    I would replace the faucet that now needs a special technique to shut off all the way.
10.    I would more easily be able to afford my mortgage, which is now about the same as one of my biweekly paychecks.
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11.    I would have 4 real chairs around the kitchen table again. Right now we have one intact chair, one that is broken but usable, and an old Swedish kneeling chair.
12.    I would pay more than the minimum on my credit cards; perhaps even get back to not carrying a balance, the way things used to be before 2005.
13.    I would get a haircut every 6 weeks or so instead of just twice a year.

Wouldn't it be good for the economy if I could do these things? I’m not looking to get a brand new car or a bigger house or designer clothes or weekly manicures. I would simply like to not be in a constant state of worry over paying very modest expenses. I don’t think that’s too much to ask after 11 years in a paraprofessional position at the U of M.  If you agree, support the U of M AFSCME locals in their negotiations.  Tell President Kaler we need a bigger wage increase @PrezKaler

I was able to determine that  I make less than a living wage for my household here:

Thu Sep 05, 2013 at 5:48 PM PT: The Minnesota Daily was on hiatus when I first wrote this. They have published the letter now.

Originally posted to nicolemm on Thu Aug 22, 2013 at 04:02 AM PDT.

Also republished by Income Inequality Kos.

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