The Working Poor

From Tom Toch over at The Quick and the Ed:

At first, I didn’t think my Education Sector colleagues and I were going to get into Arne Duncan’s Senate confirmation hearing yesterday. Arriving at 8:00 for the 10:00 event, we were surprised to find a line of 50 people already camped out in the hallway. They were a pretty disheveled crew, and they weren’t exactly jazzed about the Duncan event. A couple were dozing off. But as 10:00 approached and the line grew to several hundred people, these early birds at the front began to disappear, replaced by well-heeled lobbyists for major education organizations, including a half dozen from the National Education Association. It turns out that the organizations hired a company to have homeless people arrive at 4 am to hold places in line for them (a thriving business on Capitol Hill, I discovered). At a rate of what one of the company’s representatives said was $30 an hour, the NEA spent over $1,000 to get its team in the room. The homeless seat-savers, of course, only saw a fraction of the fees. Perhaps they should unionize.

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One thought on “The Working Poor”

  1. Seat Savers R Us; great idea for hiring the marginally hirable. Not at all surprising in the high pressure atmosphere of Wash. D.C. IF they could unionize, they could also find full times jobs; never-the-less, it’s good advice.

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