New Hampshire Senator Watters on Living with the Minimum Wage

Along with fellow New Hampshire legislators, Senator David Watters was challenged by the NH Minimum Wage work group to live on the minimum wage for a week. Working with a budget of $38.50 (the amount of food stamps for one person for one week), the Senator had this to say about his experience (see the video below):

“…I bought a loaf of bread and a jar of peanut butter, and carrots, my usual lunch materials, thinking this would get me through the week for a sandwich each noon, and then toast in the morning.  However, there are 21 slices of bread, so take out 14, and there’s just one left for breakfast.  And when I made the sandwich, I recalled when I was working in a factory, and in particular when working as a carpenter in my younger days, I would put 4-6 of these sandwiches, fruit, cookies, and milk, in my lunch box, and eat every crumb.  And after eating one sandwich, I was really hungry for the rest of the afternoon.  So, more potatoes for supper, cooked with an onion, and one piece of chicken, but knowing that if I ate too much today, the end of the week would get very tight.  Just not enough to make it through the day, let alone the week, on $5.50 a day…”.


Thanks to ECM NH for being part of the challenge and to New England Director MaryLou Beaver for sharing the information. Our kudos especially to Senator Watters for taking the challenge and responding seriously to a very serious issue. The minimum wage in this country needs to be a living wage. Please contact your Members of Congress and let them know they should support the Bill currently in Congress to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.