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May 03, 2004

More on Subcontractors

Forget Wal-Mart for a moment. Just look at the health industry, where home health care workers mostly work for subcontractors at pay of $7 per hour, even as CEOs of the main companies take home more than $1 million per year:

Medicaid and Medicare typically pay around $18 an hour for home health aides, though the rates can vary significantly, but the people who do the work - most of them immigrant women - get about $7 of that.

Many of the government contractors and their subcontractors pay their executives hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. The 2002 tax filings for Metropolitan Jewish Health - a network of more than a dozen related companies, including a nursing home - show that it paid more than $1 million in salary and other compensation to its chief executive, Eli S. Feldman, and $317,000 to $508,000 to each of seven other officials.

These executives are getting rich off of government money, then handing off the work to subcontractors who in turn exploit home health care workers.

1199-SEIU is organizing these workers and may strike soon. Cheer for their success.

Posted by Nathan at May 3, 2004 07:55 AM