Thursday, October 3, 2013

Government Jobs and "Miserly" Pay

This article lacks perspective on what low-wage workers earn in the US:
"And while pay for senior civil servants can be generous, other salaries can be equally miserly. Wages can vary depending on the location, but in Philadelphia, jobs at salary level GS-2 — a post that typically goes to someone with a high school diploma and no experience — pay as little as $24,379 annually."
 My quick tabulation of the March 2012 Current Population Survey (I have it on DropBox, if you are stymied by the BLS blackout!) shows that, among full-time workers in their early twenties with only a high school degree, median earnings are $18,000 and the 75th percentile is $28,000. Government work has always been a safe haven for those with low skills, and $25,000 a year does not look miserly for those competing for jobs in this particular market. A G-2 is a great job for someone with no experience and little education.