Reuters

Living on minimum wage

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Javier Alava, 27, stands on the street in New York, May 30, 2013. Alava works for an auto store and makes just above the national minimum wage, not exceeding eight dollars an hour. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Javier Alava, 27, stands on the street in New York, May 30, 2013. Alava works for an auto store and makes just above the national minimum wage, not exceeding eight dollars an hour. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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Javier Alava, 27, works at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. Alava commutes daily from Brooklyn by subway to Long Island which takes him about an hour daily. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Javier Alava, 27, works at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. Alava commutes daily from Brooklyn by subway to Long Island which takes him about an hour daily. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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Javier Alava, 27, receives his check for working at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Javier Alava, 27, receives his check for working at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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Javier Alava, 27, shows his check for about 50 hours of work at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Javier Alava, 27, shows his check for about 50 hours of work at an auto store in Long Island, New York, May 30, 2013. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets eats lunch at his home in Hongkou district of Shanghai, May 31, 2013. Dai works as a cleaning personnel for a company that is contracted by Shanghai Municipal government. He makes 14RMB per hour ($2.28). Dai and his wife rent a 3x4 meter room at a slum near his work area. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets eats lunch at his home in Hongkou district of Shanghai, May 31, 2013. Dai works as a cleaning personnel for a company that is contracted by Shanghai Municipal government. He makes 14RMB per hour ($2.28). Dai and his wife rent a 3x4 meter room at a slum near his work area. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets walks home after finishing his day of work in Hongkou district of Shanghai May 31, 2013. He usually works from 4am in the morning to 1pm 6 days a week. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets walks home after finishing his day of work in Hongkou district of Shanghai May 31, 2013. He usually works from 4am in the morning to 1pm 6 days a week. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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Dai Yusheng (front), 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets of the Shanghai's Hongkou district, walks near a shopping mall during a rainy day, May 31, 2013. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Dai Yusheng (front), 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets of the Shanghai's Hongkou district, walks near a shopping mall during a rainy day, May 31, 2013. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets show his hourly income of 14RMB, ($2.28) at his home in Hongkou district of Shanghai, May 31, 2013. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Dai Yusheng, 58, who works as an employee sweeping the streets show his hourly income of 14RMB, ($2.28) at his home in Hongkou district of Shanghai, May 31, 2013. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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Susanna Dimitri waits for a train at Vaux-sur-Seine train station, northeast of Paris, May 24, 2013. Dimitri, 29, works in Paris as a teacher, model and part-time performing artist (Intermittent du spectacle) in France. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Susanna Dimitri waits for a train at Vaux-sur-Seine train station, northeast of Paris, May 24, 2013. Dimitri, 29, works in Paris as a teacher, model and part-time performing artist (Intermittent du spectacle) in France. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

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Susanna Dimitri brushes her hair at her apartment in Paris, May 24, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Susanna Dimitri brushes her hair at her apartment in Paris, May 24, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

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Susanna Dimitri poses for a visual artist in Vaux-sur-Seine, northeast of Paris, May 24, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Susanna Dimitri poses for a visual artist in Vaux-sur-Seine, northeast of Paris, May 24, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

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Susanna Dimitri poses at her apartment in Paris, June 9, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Susanna Dimitri poses at her apartment in Paris, June 9, 2013. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

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Jorge, 60, eats at his home on the outskirts of Mexico City, July 4, 2013. Jorge, who suffers from advanced deafness, has worked as a barman at a pulqueria for eleven hours a day for over 30 years and earns eight dollars per day. Jorge's salary does not allow him to rent a house and he lives with the family of his wife on the outskirts of the city from where he travels for two hours to get to work. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Jorge, 60, eats at his home on the outskirts of Mexico City, July 4, 2013. Jorge, who suffers from advanced deafness, has worked as a barman at a pulqueria for eleven hours a day for over 30 years and earns eight dollars per day. Jorge's salary does not allow him to rent a house and he lives with the family of his wife on the outskirts of the city from where he travels for two hours to get to work. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

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Jorge, 60, commutes to downtown Mexico City, July 4, 2013. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Jorge, 60, commutes to downtown Mexico City, July 4, 2013. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

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Jorge, 60, works at "La antigua Roma" pulqueria in downtown Mexico City July 3, 2013. Pulque is a traditional alcoholic beverage made from the fermented sap of the maguey plant. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Jorge, 60, works at "La antigua Roma" pulqueria in downtown Mexico City July 3, 2013. Pulque is a traditional alcoholic beverage made from the fermented sap of the maguey plant. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

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Jorge, 60, poses for a photograph as he holds $100 Mexicans at "La antigua Roma" pulqueria in downtown Mexico City, July 24, 2013. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Jorge, 60, poses for a photograph as he holds $100 Mexicans at "La antigua Roma" pulqueria in downtown Mexico City, July 24, 2013. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

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Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, and her daughter Reka, 11, sit in their kitchen in Debrecen, 240 km (149 miles) east of Budapest, May 28, 2013. Gabriella, who has been unemployed for three years, takes temporary menial work mandated by the government in exchange for unemployment benefits. Her husband works odd jobs. From this and meagre social benefits, she and her husband bring home about 250,000 forints, or $1,200...more

Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, and her daughter Reka, 11, sit in their kitchen in Debrecen, 240 km (149 miles) east of Budapest, May 28, 2013. Gabriella, who has been unemployed for three years, takes temporary menial work mandated by the government in exchange for unemployment benefits. Her husband works odd jobs. From this and meagre social benefits, she and her husband bring home about 250,000 forints, or $1,200 per month. The couple have five children, a son-in-law and a grandchild living in their home. Picture taken May 28, 2013. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh (HUNGARY - Tags: BUSINESS EMPLOYMENT) ATTENTION EDITORS: PICTURE 17 OF 40 FOR PACKAGE 'LIVING ON MINIMUM WAGE'. SEARCH 'MINIMUM WAGE' FOR ALL IMAGES

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Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, shops for groceries on pay day in Debrecen, Hungary, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, shops for groceries on pay day in Debrecen, Hungary, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

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Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, cleans the street in Debrecen, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

Hungarian public worker Gabriella Bundi, 44, cleans the street in Debrecen, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

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Rufina Condori, 34, who works as a maid, walks in La Paz, Bolivia, July 15, 2013. Condori works two jobs, which in total means she receives the monthly minimum wage equivalent to approximately $170. REUTERS/David Mercado

Rufina Condori, 34, who works as a maid, walks in La Paz, Bolivia, July 15, 2013. Condori works two jobs, which in total means she receives the monthly minimum wage equivalent to approximately $170. REUTERS/David Mercado

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Rufina Condori, 34, who works as a maid, irons clothes in La Paz, Bolivia, June 11, 2013. REUTERS/David Mercado

Rufina Condori, 34, who works as a maid, irons clothes in La Paz, Bolivia, June 11, 2013. REUTERS/David Mercado

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Rufina Condori, 34, vacuums a room in La Paz June 11, 2013. REUTERS/David Mercado

Rufina Condori, 34, vacuums a room in La Paz June 11, 2013. REUTERS/David Mercado

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Rufina Condori, 34, checks her money after receiving her wages in La Paz, Bolivia, July 15, 2013. Condori works two jobs, which in total means she receives the monthly minimum wage equivalent to approximately $170. REUTERS/David Mercado

Rufina Condori, 34, checks her money after receiving her wages in La Paz, Bolivia, July 15, 2013. Condori works two jobs, which in total means she receives the monthly minimum wage equivalent to approximately $170. REUTERS/David Mercado

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Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, works on a painting for his first exhibition in Lisbon, June 26, 2013. Tavares works at a printing company where he charges the Portuguese minimum wage of 485 Euros per month. He studied at the school of arts, and is now preparing his first exhibition of paintings. Tavares lives with his parents. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, works on a painting for his first exhibition in Lisbon, June 26, 2013. Tavares works at a printing company where he charges the Portuguese minimum wage of 485 Euros per month. He studied at the school of arts, and is now preparing his first exhibition of paintings. Tavares lives with his parents. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

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Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, works on a graffiti of Nelson Mandela which he painted during festivities in his neighborhood in Lisbon, June 20, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, works on a graffiti of Nelson Mandela which he painted during festivities in his neighborhood in Lisbon, June 20, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

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Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, speaks with friends in his neighborhood Quinta da Fonte, in Lisbon, June 25, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, speaks with friends in his neighborhood Quinta da Fonte, in Lisbon, June 25, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

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Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, poses with his hourly wage of 2.50 euros, in Lisbon, June 26, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

Nelson Tavares, 24, originally from Cape Verde, poses with his hourly wage of 2.50 euros, in Lisbon, June 26, 2013. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

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Clare Mason prepares to change the nappy of a young girl at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. Mason earns the minimum wage in Australia that stands officially at A$15.96 per hour. Her duties include feeding, playing and participating in educational activities for the young children who are dropped at the center by their parents during their work day. She admits that after paying her living expenses...more

Clare Mason prepares to change the nappy of a young girl at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. Mason earns the minimum wage in Australia that stands officially at A$15.96 per hour. Her duties include feeding, playing and participating in educational activities for the young children who are dropped at the center by their parents during their work day. She admits that after paying her living expenses for the week that include A$150 for rent, A$80 for food, A$60 for a phone, A$30 for petrol, and A$200 for entertainment, she saves about A$20 a week. REUTERS/David Gray

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Clare Mason drinks a cup of tea as she takes a break from her duties at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

Clare Mason drinks a cup of tea as she takes a break from her duties at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

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Clare Mason sits with young children as they eat their lunch at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

Clare Mason sits with young children as they eat their lunch at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

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Clare Mason holds A$15.96 in her hands, the amount she earns in one hour on the minimum wage, at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

Clare Mason holds A$15.96 in her hands, the amount she earns in one hour on the minimum wage, at the Gujaga Child Care Centre La Perouse, Australia, June 18, 2013. REUTERS/David Gray

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Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, poses with the Athens Acropolis in the background, May 29, 2013. Zaroulas studied journalism, but works as a waiter in a fish tavern in an Athens suburb where he earns 4 euros per hour. He briefly worked as a journalist on websites and at a local paper in the Palaio Faliro municipality. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, poses with the Athens Acropolis in the background, May 29, 2013. Zaroulas studied journalism, but works as a waiter in a fish tavern in an Athens suburb where he earns 4 euros per hour. He briefly worked as a journalist on websites and at a local paper in the Palaio Faliro municipality. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

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Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, sits in his room at his parents flat in Athens, May 29, 2013. He lives in a 90 square-meter, two-bedroom flat with his parents and his 31-year-old sister, who shares a bedroom with him. Zaroulas commutes from home to work and back by tram. After finishing high school he served in the Greek army for nine months, which is mandatory for male Greeks. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, sits in his room at his parents flat in Athens, May 29, 2013. He lives in a 90 square-meter, two-bedroom flat with his parents and his 31-year-old sister, who shares a bedroom with him. Zaroulas commutes from home to work and back by tram. After finishing high school he served in the Greek army for nine months, which is mandatory for male Greeks. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

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Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, sits in his room at his parents flat in Athens, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, sits in his room at his parents flat in Athens, May 29, 2013. REUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

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Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, poses with two 2 Euro coins, his hourly salary, in his room in Athens, May 29, 2013. ZREUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

Dimitrios Zaroulas, 24, poses with two 2 Euro coins, his hourly salary, in his room in Athens, May 29, 2013. ZREUTERS/Yannis Behrakis

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Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, cries while viewing a monthly bank statement of benefit withdrawals in the city of Aguas Lindas, outside Brasilia, August 2, 2013. Sueli takes care of her 11-year-old daughter Amanda Suellen Lima, who has cerebral palsy. She lives on a minimum wage of R$678 per month (US$294), which she receives through social assistance because of her daughter's condition, which is part of a government program offered by...more

Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, cries while viewing a monthly bank statement of benefit withdrawals in the city of Aguas Lindas, outside Brasilia, August 2, 2013. Sueli takes care of her 11-year-old daughter Amanda Suellen Lima, who has cerebral palsy. She lives on a minimum wage of R$678 per month (US$294), which she receives through social assistance because of her daughter's condition, which is part of a government program offered by the National Insurance Institute and the Ministry of Social Development and Fighting Hunger. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

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Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, towel dries her daughter after a bath in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, towel dries her daughter after a bath in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

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Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, plays with her daughter in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, plays with her daughter in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

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Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, holds her monthly salary in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

Sueli Paes Alecrin, 48, holds her monthly salary in the city of Aguas Lindas, Brazil, August 2, 2013. REUTERS/Ueslei Marcelino

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