Broward commissioner to live on minimum wage
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Broward Commissioner Martin David Kiar has agreed to live on minimum wage for days to bring awareness to the need for an increase.
Kiar began the challenge on Monday and will continue to live on the current state minimum wage of $7.79 per hour for a total of five days. "Usually, I don't think about what I'm spending for the week," said Kiar. "If I see something I want, I buy it; if I want to go see a movie, I go and see it."
Kiar was given a budget of $106.21 to spend for the week on food, groceries, bills and gas. "This is much more difficult, because you really have to watch what you spend," he said.
As he began the week living on a minimum wage, Kiar went grocery shopping at Bravo Supermarket with an airport employee who actually lives on minimum wage. "For me it's nothing, it's nothing," said the airport employee. "I can't do anything with $7.79, but I have to because I have a family. I have three kids."
The airport employee went on to say that he struggles to pay bills with his income. "I'm always behind on the bills because what I make. I can't even pay rent," he said.
Kiar believes increasing the minimum wage will help struggling families and will also spur economic growth. "I'm only doing this for one week, but people in South Florida do this every, single day," he said, "and the stress that they go through of trying to feed their families and make ends meet is incredible. We really need to stick up for these people and they deserve to be paid a living wage."
(Copyright 2013 by Sunbeam Television Corp. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)