Monday, June 16, 2008

Low-paying horse work

It annoys me that horse work is apparently seen as being worth less than minimum wage. I found the following ad on our local Craigslist, in the "Gigs" section:

Horse Job

Boarding Stable Help Needed. Feeding 26 horses and Cleaning stalls, paddocks and pastures cleaning and filling waters 7-1 Sunday- Saturday.

* Location: Littleton
* it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
* Compensation: Monthly Contract Work. $1,200.00


It doesn't seem bad until you do the math. "Sunday- Saturday" I interpret to mean seven days a week. So that's six hours a day, seven days a week — or about 180 hours a month. Divide that into $1,200 a month and you get $6.67 per hour.

This rate is below the minimum wage in Colorado, which happens to be $7.02 per hour in 2008. Of course, they get away with this by offering it as a contract job, not an hourly job.

In my mind, an hourly job is one where you have to be there a certain number of hours, whereas for a contract job you just have to put in enough time to get the work done. Under that logic, this job would actually be hourly, since they list specific hours you have to be there. Which means that they ought to be offering at least minimum wage.

Trying to get around minimum wage laws by classifying a job as "contract" is downright scummy, if you ask me!

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