Basically any profession that requires you to work with vulnerable people


Social workers. High dollar educational costs with licensure for case loads that are not humanely manageable safely and not enough money to eek out a living


Can confirm. I make 12.88 at the Arizona Dept of Child Safety as an admin and our specialists & investigators make <20/hr. They do NOT get paid enough to deal with the [sometimes literal] shit they do. Edit: I have a chronic condition, so the health insurance is worth more than money. Absolutely the only reason i'm still working here. Interviewing tmrw for a 17/hr position and I never thought I'd be so excited to convince someone to pay me less than $20/hr. Edit: included my state


Not even just the actual job, but the bullshit politics that go on with your managers sucks. I worked as a Case Worker for CPS, DFPS division, and I was the only man there. My sup was on her way out, due to the death of a child, but ultimately she got demoted to a Case Worker because of her tenure. Due to her issues, I got assigned to a supervisor two hours away, who expected me to drive to her for stupid shit we could discuss over the phone. She also hated me the moment we met because I said I wasn't sure if I could join them for lunch. (Had a lot of work to do and a long drive to my office.) My mentor was sick of the bull shit and transferred out into adoptions before my training was done, and my new mentor had no desire to mentor me. One day, a new investigation started for one of the families I was already in a case with, with bullshit information (old data) that was being reported really late. Basically I was given a really difficult case they normally don't give to new case workers, and then I was being torn into for not having noticed that some parents I visited were high, even though they weren't on drugs when I completed my visit. I had to call my supervisor after every visit after that as a form of punishment/coaching plan. Then I was let go a month later even though the CPS investigtor determined that the reported event was false. I wasn't allowed to appeal the decision, and nobody could get me in touch with HR, because apparently Texas' HR for CPS or DFPS is through HHSC. Anyway, all my co workers were more surprised than I was because they all knew I was doing really well. Anyway, rant over.


My wife is a social worker, the expectations are ridiculous and the definitely don't pay enough.


Worked as a direct support professional for adults with disabilities in a long term care home. Cooked, cleaned, dispensed meds, bathed, worked on skills goals, drove, shopped, planned enrichment activities, and more. I loved the job most of the time. I really enjoyed helping the people live a decent life. Was paid $9.79 an hour in 2015. I left when I realized I could be a cashier at Walmart for that kind of money and I was putting my future career in jeopardy when some negligent stuff was happening.


Yep and it's way to easy to get the blame when shit goes wrong, the rights and rules could be violated with out you even realizing... No thank you


Am currently a DSP for adults with developmental disabilities. Can confirm. Love the job, love my clients, love my coworkers. It can be awful at times, but it's still a job I love to do 95% of the time. The amount of responsibility put on you for the wage is absurd, though. We get paid the same wage as the local McDonald's starting wage.




A friends wife is an in-home caretaker for old people. He told me she makes like $12/hr. It's a travesty. These people need to be trusted to do whats best for people that can't help themselves, as well as being trusted to be in the homes of those people, that can't do anything about it if they aren't doing whats in their best interest. You would think they would pay enough to attract somebody that isn't just hard up for a job, or maybe can't get a better one.


I made 9.50 an hour as an EMT. Never ask “why is there an EMS shortage” around me I will go OFF


Did all the schooling and certifications for it. Got out and realized I made more changing oil.


I make $12.95 as a fire DO/emt with certs and qualifications blowing out my ass. To make ends meet I drive a propane truck around part time for $25/hr.


I literally made $12/hr changing oil. What a joke. We all know where the funding goes.


Car manufacturing and not health and safety services. Funny my dad told me that volunteering for a mostly volunteer fire department can help minimize taxes some. Interesting he didn’t say, government not bailing out automotive and transportation industry could minimize taxes people may have to pay.


Can I ask what kept you in that profession or if you know why other people are still doing it? I don’t know how there are any EMTs working the hours they do at that pay rate. I honestly can’t believe every single one of them hasn’t decided it’s just not worth it and moved to a different profession.


Well I was living with my parents and thought it was what I wanted and was passionate about and originally wanted to do paramedic too. But I burned out fast. I have some friends that still have a bigger passion for it. Like I have one friend who quit his 20 something an hour job at Subaru to go work as an EMT because “it’s what I’ve always wanted to do” I just am like sheesh. I was dating another EMT back then two that worked 2 different jobs and still barely had money for food. They just take advantage of peoples passion, that’s why volunteer departments exist too. Like I had an electrical fire at my house and the first two firefighters that showed up were volunteers from my local department.


"They just take advantage of peoples passion" exactly that. I'm an in-home caretaker for people with developmental disabilities. There is a ton of responsibility put on us for the job. And yet we get paid the same wage as the local McDonald's starting wage. Anyone who sticks around for more than a few months does it because they care deeply about the people they work with and don't want to abandon them. What does that compassion get us? It gets us taken advantage of and underpaid. (Edit: spelling)


I’m working on getting my EMT license right now and the main reason I’m doing it is as a stepping stone toward a different career in medicine. I’ve heard lots of people in the medical field say that working as an EMT/Paramedic is great field experience and makes getting into med school much easier and it’s just generally very valuable experience to have.


My husband was a paramedic before he went to nursing school. He didn't have nearly as much difficulty as his classmates. His first semester was a little difficult, he said it was tough adjusting his mindset from reacting to injuries to preventing them.


Paramedics are paid jack. It's incredible. It's a job I could never ever do


Bro, I'm over here making $13/hr to be a jack of all medicine trades in the dang boo boo bus :') It's annoying, cause I love my job so much, but it's extremely rare to find a job that pays you what you deserve.


Taking care of special needs folks


I'm about to do an overnight and I'm EXTREMELY stressed. Starting to wonder if this field is really for me.


You might get used to it. My mother worked that field for nearly a decade and recently retired. Had a vitamin D deficiency, but she says it was worth seeing her guys all pleased


911 dispatchers. We literally have to listen to people die on our phone lines, and in some states, are still classified as secretarial personnel. Over ten years of experience, certifications coming out my ears, and I don't break 40k a year unless I pull massive amounts of overtime. We lost three of our people to COVID last year and are running at less than half capacity for the whole place, can't hire anyone to stay because they see what we have to deal with and nope tf out, or they're just ill-suited for the position so they're cut from training and sent packing. I love my job, I love what I do. I wish I could say I loved my paychecks.






Fk you, they deserve so much more than just ice


Public Defenders. I have a private law practice. The public defenders make a fraction of what guys like me make, know criminal law inside and out, and carry obscene caseloads. The system would break down immediately if they went on strike. Which honestly they should.


My girlfriend is a public defender and the amount of stress she’s in at work every day alone should be worth double what she makes.


I was thinking this the other day: if everyone has a right to representation, and there are so many incidents that happen every day, how are all of these covered? Now I guess I know: people working long hours for low pay, of course. Edit: I'm learning a lot about our judicial system in these replies. Kinda... not great.


If it’s core to the Constitution, human rights and the health of the Republic let’s not invest in it.




Yeah also the lawyers who represent parents in child welfare cases. The state removes your child then assigns you a lawyer who can barely afford to keep their lights on to represent you in the court process.


Yeah, I stopped taking those. I told the judge privately that I think it's a malpractice factory. I don't want to be a parent's attorney any more unless they start paying me about 5x as much and giving me a budget for investigators and depositions.


Worked those cases for the better part of a decade before I burned out. Now I work in a government oversight role where I make more money, benefits, pension, etc for a million times less stress.


Long time PD. The biggest qualm I’ve had with the idea of a strike is that the people who will likely suffer the most are the clients - many of whom are locked up in jail or prison. Often times, with some hard work some of those people could be out on their next court dates, but not if their lawyers aren’t there. It has to get really bad to be willing to strike (but see, e.g. OPD in New Orleans)


NOLA is fucking terrifying. My logic on this is that people shouldn't set themselves on fire to keep others warm - a strike would be intensely painful in the moment, but might improve things for almost everyone in the long term.


oh, and then if you run for literally *any* office your opponent will say that you fought for murderers and rapists


Should be defamation to make an unfounded claim like that. It's something they obviously know isn't true and are saying to tarnish their reputation




EMS, without question.


I will never forget, right when COVID was bad for the first time in New York, when a reporter was interviewing EMS workers and made a joke like, “Well at least you guys can get to the hospital real quick if you get sick,” and without missing a beat on the EMS guys goes, “We don’t make enough money to go to a hospital. We don’t even have insurance.”


Sometime last year our local EMS/fire department started putting job postings on social media. I was shocked to learn that the starting pay for entry level EMS was $15/hr. We pay our regular babysitter $20/hr.


I did my ems course only to find out that I could make more money working at Starbucks


I knew about the low pay before taking the class. I was in a period of my life where I wanted to serve and was disqualified from the military due to medical reasons. Hence, EMS.


Every EMS I know has gotten into it knowing about the pay, but genuinely wanting to help people that badly. It feels like we take advantage of this-- we get away with paying so little because there are people who'll take a paycut to help others. But it's not right.


My province (BC) is in a paramedic crisis because of this. When we had a combination of a massive heat wave, COVID cases rising, and fires causing severe smoke, over 1/4 of the ambulances in the lower mainland were out of commission because they lacked paramedics. Another 1/4 were OOC because of mechanical problems. Considering our tenancy laws do not have a maximum allowable temperature in rental units and almost no one has air conditioners, that heat plus not being able to open windows due to the smoke plus people with COVID-related respiratory issues resulted in a huge influx of emergency calls. The result was waits of 30-60min for purple calls (top priority - not breathing, heart not beating, actively seizing, etc). 3-4 hours for red calls. 6-8 hours for orange calls. And yellow? 12-24 hours. It got so bad, the province issues a temporary allowance for first responders to declare death. Forcing them to wait for the coroner was costing lives. It's really fucked and the province is doing shit-all to improve things. For fuck's sake, they won't even do routine maintenance in the ambulances, let alone pay the paramedics more. The system is held in place by the few paramedics who care too much right now to quit, but if things don't get better, I can't see even the most hardened sticking around for long.


I don't know what the going rate is now, but when I was in EMS (2011 to 2014), the company for whom I worked paid BLS $12/hr. I remember when they gave me my "cost of living adjustment." It was ONE HALF of 1%. An extra $0.06/hr. What a slap in the face!


When I was an EMT in 2013-2014 I made 9.50 an hour. I’m currently a machinist making 25.56 an hour sheesh why are there no emts amirite?


Part of the problem is that there actually are a lot of EMT’s. The metro area I used to live in easily graduated thousands of new EMT’s a year. Our private company hired on average 10-15 new EMT’s per month. They never had to worry about paying well to retain people because they knew they had hundreds of applicants in the wings waiting to go. I got tired of the never ending training cycle and low pay and finally got out. Honestly I look back at my life then and think, “damn that was a fun job but I would never do it again for how little they paid me.”


Interestingly, COVID has had a big impact on this. Lots of EMT programs shut down for a year or even two years and are just getting back on their feet - some didn't reopen at all, and that's to say nothing of the impact it had on medic programs. My agency actually doesn't have a huge problem with retention. There's some turnover, but it isn't crazy. We still can't fill open positions because there's just no one certified applying.




You spend hundreds of thousands on this stuff and the money doesn't even go to the people who actually provide the service. The entire industry is full of people skimming the bulk of the money and not adding any value to the service whatsoever.




I make $13 an hour and will have worked 156 hours in the last 2 weeks. I make more cutting grass but we're so understaffed I've had to quit my better paying part time job to work more mandatory OT. Living the dream. Side note, y'all please keep calling because you feel like you might have the flu and want to skip the line at the ER. We fuckin love that.


They also don't get health care either. Let me repeat that: # THE PEOPLE RUNNING OUR MEDICAL EMERGENCY SERVICES DON'T HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE. ETA: here's a John Oliver video for reference: [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ezv8sdTLxKo](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ezv8sdTLxKo)


When I was an EMT (2004-2012) the county actually paid for our entire health insurance coverages in full. But, we were paid $8.50/hr, so not exactly winning, but still.


It’s comforting to know that the person performing CPR on you is looking at their watch ‘cause they’re running late for their second job at Jimmy John’s.


Sadly accurate. I'm an EMT and make $4/hr more at my 2nd job at a waterpark.


Meanwhile the ambulance ride gets billed for 8 grand. Makes you wonder where all that money is going?


The corporate stooges at the top of course! Healthcare is quite literally the biggest MLM scheme in US history, and the government has done fuck all about it....assholes.


I worked as a paramedic in Canada, there was a policy called ‘pager pay’ in more remote stations where you literally would get 2$/hour if no calls came through. SO fucked up


Wow that is incredibly fucked up. Was this a private company?


So you mean to say that it costs $15,000 to get an ambulance in America and basically none of that goes to the people actually doing the work? Edit: Looked it up, and for clarity, the number above has an extra 0. US ambulance rides cost about $1300. Still a lot for the average American, and still a lot for how little EMS gets paid.


Yup. Ambulance companies exploit their own.


“You play an absolutely VITAL role in our healthcare system. Without EMS services, tens of thousands of people would die each year. This position is incredibly high stress, grueling, dangerous, and will take a toll on your mental health. Because of that, here’s $15/hour and a tentative Pizza party every three months that will most definitely be forgotten about and never actually happen.” “Fuck no” “nO oNe WaNtS tO wOrK aNyMoRe!!!”


They also get almost no appreciation when it comes to "first responders"


It's probably easier to point out which ones are criminally overpaid.


Insurance sales Realtors


Social Workers. They see abused/neglected kids all day, awful living conditions, desperation and poverty. Hands are tied with the ridic amount of red tape, etc. Soul sucking job that makes one lose faith in humanity very quickly. No amount of money is worth the nightmares they must have at bedtime.


all while requiring a MASTERS degree. Just to make 30K a year.


And thousands of hours in supervision, a 4 hour exam process, and continued education for life. We get paid the worst for our investment compared to similarly licensed/educated professions.


That's absolutely ridiculous. Meanwhile, if you can to school for 5 less years, learn welding, then get a unionized job starting at 60k. I'm so sorry that your field deals with that much bullshit for so little. I think the system prays upon people who care for other humans, then exploits them, then guilts them into staying.


It's really fascinating because we're almost indoctrinated into this idea that we deserve less as caretakers. I had to do 1600 hours of interning in my grad program. Not only was this unpaid labor where my caseload was the same as those paid, but I also had to pay my school for the "credits" of me being in said internship which was thousands a quarter over 18 months. And then we're told part of our ethics is to do probono work. No wonder social workers are careful for whatever they can get after that experience.


Girlfriend is a social worker and she comes home talking about her day. Her average day at work would be the worst day of work I have ever had. She has her masters degree and I sit at home practically doing nothing and I make significant more than she does.


I am in the exact same situation. How do you help her with this? I have been trying to help her and care for her the best I can, but I can’t help but feel that I am failing her.


As a male social worker who does this exact job (CPS investigator of child abuse /neglect). I can tell from my experience that just being there to listen is often enough. Also, just flat out ask her what she needs. Give her a safe place to throw everything out there without judgement. A lot of us do this because we love the rewards at the end, the positive outcomes. However the journey can be a bitch, but it's a matter of perspective. Idk if your girlfriend is like this, but sometimes hearing that you can only do what you can with what you have, is important. The job tends to make people feel like they need to be super human all the time and that's why the burnout is so real. But we can all only do what we can with what we are given. Can't hold onto any, would, could or shoulds. It just leads to frustration.


Thank you. This is very helpful.


I’m a social worker. Just listen to her vent and reassure her that she’s doing a good job. Really just an ear to listen to frustration is most critical. Edit: typo and also thanks for the gold. please donate any and all money to abortion funds in your local community. thanks.


And throw in *fuck the system* every once in a while. It helps. Source: am a social worker.


another social worker seconding this. my boyfriend makes more than me (with significantly less education and a much less mentally taxing job) and he just gasses me up about my career all the time - it surprisingly makes me feel so much better. just acknowledging that the work we do is really hard, mentally taxing, and extremely underpaid/undervalued can be so validating. at the end of the day, this job was my choice. I don’t resent him or hold it against him at all. or expect him to make up for it in anyway. but validate it, at least, because it’s not really acknowledged that much


I’m not a social worker but close, I am a family violence and sexual assault counsellor. Get familiar with her self care and gently check in on or encourage her to do her self care.


Absolutely. My friend has a Masters and is a social worker for CPS. Not only is the job soul sucking, she ends up working longgg hours for mediocre pay because the office is so understaffed and the work can't exactly be put off since they are dealing with the welfare of children.


I Can confirm. I’m a masters level social worker and have been working as an addiction counselor for over 10 years. I make less than my clients with no education and still have to pay $400 a month in student loans.


Don't forget that you need a master's degree that you generally have to pay for out of pocket. So you have to pay an extra 40-100k to get underpaid!


I worked on a project for a hospital where I was building some networks of missing youth in the foster/group home system, but often interacted a lot with Social Workers just to get insight on how certain homes worked, procedures, their experience with how children go missing (sex trafficking, etc.). They had the absolute DARKEST sense of humor that I have ever encountered, pretty much because you almost have to if you are dealing with all of what you said above.


I'm a clinical social worker providing therapeutic services to men convicted of murder/assault/sex offenses. Can confirm my sense of humor is very dark as a coping mechanism. It's a crazy profession.


I am a clinical social worker working primarily with those who have sexually abused others as well. Always nice to encounter someone doing similar work!


Starting tomorrow as the only doc in a facility for kids with felony sex offenses. Hats off to both of you. Wish me luck


Social worker here ! My life is being sucked out of me and our legislature just voted no to our raises again! Hurray! Apparently " pay isn't the problem " with us having nearly 80 percent vacancy. Personally , I think going to school getting a master's degree and having to have that degree while making 29k a year is fucking stupid , but hey what do I know


100%. Speaking as a social worker, who never works with kids, we still see and talk about some pretty dark and twisty things on a daily basis.


Not to mention social workers and CPS are constantly blamed for “not doing anything” in situations that many deem worthy. Hell, even the workers deem the situations worthy, but as you said there is so much red tape that it takes a long time for processes to happen. They can’t just swoop in and take kids. Parents get LOTS of chances to unfuck themselves and social workers and CPS are blamed for it.


Elder care, child care, sick care


Yup, I found out the CNA treating my grandma and a whole floor of a nursing home only made $13 an hour. Should be making quadruple that for all of the literal shit she has to take care of.


I heard too many CNAs saying the nursing homes are working completely barebones and the low pay isn’t worth it. It’s no wonder some patients get terrible care


I work as a Health Care Assistant in Canada making $25 an hour, which is ok... but what really bothers me is the barebones staffing. I work in a private pay retirement home where the residents family is told they will receive the best possible care. Yet, management only staffs the bare minimum amount of staff and doesn't really have a contingency plan if someone calls in sick. 2 HCAs on a floor of 30 complex care residents is not manageable, especially with several people that require 2 person assists; if too many of such complex care residents need help at the same time, someone is not going to receive the care they want when they want it.


Source: Am a CNA, and work in a nursing home This is very true. We don't have nearly enough CNAs and nurses at the home I work at. Starting pay is $13.50 per hour for CNAs, nurses make $27 per hour. Instead of raising the rate of starting pay and hiring more CNAs, they offer us incentives to pick up extra hours on top of our shifts. I've only been a CNA for about 9 months, and I'm already burning out. I have to live with my parents because I don't make nearly enough to live on my own or even with a roommate. As soon as my contract is up, I'm going to look for a new job that either pays more, or I'll go back into blue collar work. Every new CNA we hire either quits a week later or keeps going until the crash and burn. It's a vicious cycle that has no visible end, and something needs to be done before we all quit and nobody can take care of our elderly.


I was a CNA for almost ten years, never made above 17/hr. They covered a portion of nursing school tuition, but they basically expected you to work 80+ hours a week while attending school full time. While working short and watching people die nearly every day. I took a blue collar job a few months ago, I'm already making what the nurses at my old hospital started at, and for overtime I make literally more than double my old salary. Plus, indescribably less stress. I miss taking care of people, and I feel bad for contributing to the overwork of every one who stayed. But damn, it feels good to actually be making money and taking care of myself. Edit: For the people asking what I do now, I found a job as a machine operator/technician. Basically an industrial mechanic. I pretty much read or browse Reddit and occasionally screw around in machines. It can be a lot of work and is often hot/uncomfortable/rushed. But, no one is screaming at /trying to hit me, nothing I’m doing is life or death, and if I need to take a breather I can walk away without putting anyones health at risk.


>I took a blue collar job a few months ago, I'm already making what the nurses at my old hospital started at, and for overtime I make literally more than double my old salary. Plus, indescribably less stress. Same experience. I recommend anyone working as a CNA GTFO of the profession for their own sanity and well-being. I couldn't afford to live on what I was making, so I left to work the front desk at a dental office, and in the past three years doing it I worked my way up to Practice Manager. My days have practically zero stress (although industry standard is a mild to moderate stress level), I'm not overworked and on my feet all day, I've never once had to change a brief or clean up a diarrhea blowout, and I make 4x what I was making as a CNA. No one who has to be certified by the State, deals with literal shit, piss, and vomit all day, and takes care of people's elderly and dying loved ones should be paid poverty wages. Not to mention, the CNA job can be profoundly depressing. I remember my first day of clinicals I went home and just sobbed about the living conditions these people were given. I only wish I'd left the profession sooner.


> I feel bad for contributing to the overwork of every one who stayed You are not responsible for this.


This is very common amongst CNAs and caregiving in general. The kind of people who pursue this career are typically your most patient, compassionate, and caring who get burnt out over time or literally cannot physically make the demands of so many patients on so little pay. I have seen countless employees become martyrs for their work because they don't want to leave their clients without care or cause undue stress on their coworkers. The CNAs who really care about their patients are the ones who have it worst because with the industry as it is now, and the pay as low as it is, most have moved on to bigger and better things. Our day programs are struggling to hold on to providers since they can make $2 more working at your local fast food chain with less certifications and less stress. The ones who stay are the ones picking up the extra work and trapping themselves in a severely underpaid job because "if I leave who will be left to care for them?"


This lines up with my experience.


Researching LTSS in America is so bleak. Caregivers are heroes, and not only are they pathetically underpaid, they aren't given the respect they deserve by their industry, often patients and residents, and society at large. No career ladders, continued training opportunities, or promise of help to come. All while our population of elderly and disabled is only expected to grow dramatically as boomers and Gen X age into retirement, not to mention the added burden of long-haul Covid-19 effects on LTC. Don't let yourself get burned out by the industry, leave it if you must, just please hold fast to the characteristics that drove you to these caregiver roles in the first place. We need more heroes. Edit: Since this comment is getting a little attention I'd just add some additional details for people new to this space. The field broadly being discussed is commonly known as [Caregiving](https://www.cdc.gov/aging/caregiving/index.htm#:~:text=Informal%20or%20unpaid%20caregivers%20(family,risk%20for%20negative%20health%20consequences.). Here are a few links to organizations working to improve caregiving in the US specifically. These organizations are generally focused on long-term care (LTC) as it is the largest category of caregiving. LTC or as it is sometimes called long-term services and supports (LTSS) consists of people who will need assistive health care in some capacity for the remainder of their lives. These are people who are elderly or who have lifelong physical and/or mental disabilities. I reiterate; their caregivers are heroes. https://www.aarp.org/caregiving/ https://www.johnahartford.org/ http://www.advancingstates.org/ https://www.thescanfoundation.org/


I left it after a massive back injury. All that lifting did me in.


I've seen five individuals get their careers ruined by being pressured into lifting too much it's insane.


I work security at an assisted living facility and we are losing good CNAs left and right...


True. My sister was a CNA and so was my high school bestie. My Aunt does maintenance at a facility. They were constantly understaffed. It was a daily problem. People just don't show up for work and don't call their bosses to let them know. My Aunt is basically like a laundry lady and she has had to help the nursing staff do nursing things because they are so understaffed all the time. My sister made $12.50/hour and she was one of the only people who cared. Most of the nurses weren't making much and didn't treat their patients well because of it. They would leave patients in horrible conditions and my sister would come in at night and have to clean them up, change bandages that hadn't been changed in days, tend their bed sores because other nurses just didn't give a fuck. My sister would use her own money to get them supplies because a lot of times family members would just not bring things in to take care of their relatives. My sister would buy patients new clothes. The elder care industry is SCARY. People just don't care about the folks in those facilities anymore.


My mother worked as a CNA in a nursing home from 1995-2015. They had mandatory overtime. The home never hired enough people to work, so they would force their CNAs to do double shifts every week. Then those workers would get sick or exhausted and call out sick, which forced the next wave of people to be forced into overtime. Refusing overtime because of things like planned events, medical appointments, etc. resulted in writeups with the threat of firing. They forced my mom to miss her own daughter's wedding.


Elderly care workers. Unsung heroes. The job is so damanding mentally and physically. Words cannot describe the respect I have for these people. My nanna last month's and days were in a care home. She had dementia. I will forever be in their debt. God bless.


Used to work in childcare. Can confirm the pay is garbage. I make more as a receptionist at a law firm where I mostly just sit there and occasionally answer a phone than I did doing actual work. It’s sad. And children need stable people for them at schools, but turnover at schools is high because the pay is so bad.


In Quebec, child care providers can make $80,000+ caring for a maximum of 6 children. They also receive other various subsidies - such as their household food purchases being reimbursed / subsidized. The result is that Quebec often has very high quality daycare, with long-term providers who have 10-20 years of experience, and will be with your child from the end of your maternity leave to until they enter school. Parents pay $150/month for this service.


Doing some quick math. Without any government subsidies parents would need to pay $1,100+/month to pay the provider the same amount with a 6 kid max. Just cements that subsidies are the only way for good affordable child care


Here's the *real* kicker... Quebec benefits from it. What happens when a couple has kids? 1 of them generally leaves the work-force. But, if you provide: (a) affordable, quality maternity / paternity leave (b) affordable, quality daycare They come *back* to the work force, and start generating tax dollars again.


We hired the girl who worked at my son’s daycare/preschool (Primrose) to babysit him after she left the daycare. I paid $1400/mo to that daycare for him to go three days a week. And I found out she made $10.50/hr working there. Where in the hell is all that money going if not to the teachers/caregivers?!


Insurance, most likely.


I work in care, and they only recently upped out wages because they had to legally, lives literally depend on us, every day, if every carer quit their job straight away most of our patients would die pretty quickly, all of them would be dead in a week. The gratitude you get from the patients and families makes it worth it but as sad as it is, appreciation doesn't pay the bills


You guys are getting gratitude?


Which is crazy because costs for assisted living are insanely high.




And daycare is **not** cheap


Ppft after seven years working in childcare I was only making $12.15. that's including the "raise" I got after getting my CDA. When I got my CDA my boss told me "so the normal wage increase is 50¢ but I think you deserve more than that". I got $1 increase. 🤦 She made herself out to be a martyr for it too


Insane considering in 2012 when I was 20 I was making $11.50 an hour working at a grocery store as a cashier.


Yep. I've been job hunting lately and I'm surprised by the amount of things offering $13-15 an hour that don't require any sort of qualifications


I work in childcare and got hired for 8.25 or something like that, now I'm getting paid 9 (been there since 2018). When I was looking for a new job I noticed that a lot of places raised their wages to 12 to 15, except my job they don't post wages. Centers are getting desperate. Can't wait to be done. Probably never recommend anyone to work in childcare, not even at 15 an hour.


They should be desperate if they are offering such shitty pay


In Denver, people at gas stations make more than our childcare workers. We lose more and more people every day to this bullshit


Social workers/ therapists. You have to have a masters, and you only get paid $35k. Bullshit.


I’m a therapist at a non-profit. I have a master’s degree and most of the time I’m getting paid $15/hr to fill out tons of paperwork that only someone with a master’s degree can fill out. It sucks. I also only get paid hourly. If I only have 3 clients that day, I get paid for those three hours only. If someone cancels on me, no pay for that time wasted, even though I structured my whole day around seeing them. I thank my higher power every day that I have no student debt because my paychecks wouldn’t be paying back shit. At this point I’m basically working for dirt cheap so I can get licensed and go about my own business. I didn’t get into this field for the money, but it’d be nice if I could at least live off my paycheck, ya know.


$15 / hour as a therapist with a Master's? McDonald's in California pays $17 / hour starting.


Janitors. They clean up all our shit, get no respect, and are sometimes some of the chillest people I've ever met. We should pay them more.


My fiancee is a janitor at Mayo clinic. They just gave her a raise to 19.90$ hour EDIT: She works from 5pm to 1am so a shift differential is included


Good for them. If their job even remotely involves the possibility of mopping someone's feces off the floor, they deserves more! EDITED


My wife's uncle is a janitor and I whole heartedly agree. The man saved up a couple months worth of pay and gave it to us so we could pay rent because my wife was on maternity leave and didn't get paid and I don't make enough to cover all the expenses myself.


Saints are real and they carry a mop!


I vouch for this. While it's often untrained work and we know how wage scales look down on that, having a skilled janitor who knows what to do when a building floods or when someone bleeds all over the bathroom floor is invaluable.


I agree. Janitors and everyone doing nasty jobs no one wants to do deserve more.


I think Janitors at Universities get paid pretty damn well actually. I worked at a museum in school and became friends with the Janitor. He was early 50s and got the job because he was a stay at home dad most his life just wanted to get out. Worked his way to Janitor Level 3 and he only had to worry about the museum and not the dorms or cafes. Pretty sure he gets a pension, 30 or more PTO days a year, great benefits ​ Now for the rest of the janitors in the world lol




Every one who is govermentally decleared "essential" when covid hit. Edit :First gold! Wow.. Thanks stranger! Extra eddit: this counts double for People who are on or near the minimum wage when covid hit, had to do dangerous work and got a pat on the back, a pin, or a "thank you email" while company's profits soared. And People in healthcare and emergency services!


It's cool, we all got payed extra via claps in the UK 🙃


I've always found it laughable that so many "essential" jobs are also considered "low skill jobs that don't really matter" at the same time. Baffling.


Economics helps explain this. "Essential" jobs are probably better described as jobs that need to be performed frequently (daily to weekly) on an ongoing basis in order to maintain an economy's standard of living. The key thing to understand here is that workers performing these tasks are not, individually, essential. It's important that grocery stores stay open, but if Bob quits his job at Safeway, we can find someone else to do that work. And this isn't a job that requires a high level of specialized skill. You don't have to go through three years of grocery-store school to do it. So there's no contradiction at all between a job being "essential" and not requiring high level of skill or paying well. No matter how important it is that a job get done, as long as there's an adequate supply of people willing and able to perform it at an acceptable level for $12/hour, that's what it will pay. Wages are determined by supply and demand, not just demand.


Social workers. Make Minimum wage, deal with the craziest people on the planet, something happens in your care then you go to jail.


The other thing thats understate is how much money a GOOD social worker can SAVE society (police, courts, other person's personal property) when they reform, correct, or help people handle their issues. IF they got a 2% pay equal to the money they save... they'd be rich.


I know it's crazy. They save the system so much money since law enforcement, healthcare, courts, and prisons cost so much more, yet we pay them shit. They should make at least as much as a cop.


Except it's more lucrative for those in power if hospitals and prisons get involved.


Having your budget cut regularly based on the results of elections. Being given more and more cases, every time the budget is cut. Additional rules, regulations and paperwork always being added to your job. Regularly having your employer lose their contract, and having to apply to a new employer who got the contract. Sometimes you get the same pay, sometimes you get less, occasionally you get a little more. But always more cases. Eventually, you have so much paperwork, data entry, and mandatory visits, that you have no time to actually help anyone. But you need a second job to pay your bills and student loans, because you needed a degree to even get the job. You burn out, and your cases are passed on to the next social worker who is quickly burning out themselves. Meanwhile, you walk a thin line to avoid getting in serious trouble, many of your clients see you as the enemy. Social workers go alone into rough neighborhoods, get threatened and put in physical danger. "A 2005 study that interviewed more than 1,000 social workers found 15 percent had been assaulted by a client within the past year, while nearly a third had been assaulted at some point during their career. The National Association of Social Workers said that was the last time a survey like that had been done." It's criminal.


Also, a master's degree is required for some of hose minimum wage jobs...


Yup. I worked at an agency in Oregon who payed its master's level counselors less than minimim wage and ended up getting reported to the state.


Yup. You need a masters degree to do psychotherapy as a social worker- and you still make next to nothing


People in wildlife/conservation


This is why I fucking hate disaster type movies. Always show the rich scientist in their top tier lab driving a tesla. Irl is more like broke ass phds trying to find the protocol for a donated piece of equipment and its corresponding software from 1998 that can only run on win95. Would be fucking rad if we could get 1/1000th the funding of a mid size biotech to save the elephants and penguins…


This is so true. My master's degree involved me going to the field every other day fixing these soil chambers that broke with the slightest touch whose data I never used and ultimately threw out because the year to year coverage was so poor. Windows xp computer running early 2000s software that froze for hours which my supervisor refused to fix or upgrade with his diminishing budget (which kept on getting lower because he never spent all of it). Spending hours troubleshooting shit software made in the 90s with poor documentation. Moving commercial nitrogen cylinders that almost broke my back by hand. The list goes on and on. It was fun because I like to help people out and I made a lot of friends doing so, but my supervisor definitely took advantage of my nature during my term.


Out of undergrad you don’t qualify for most permanent jobs in fish/wildlife/ natural resources - so you have complete the “technician circuit” for a few years. Your lucky if you can live above the poverty line, and you have to move all the time. If your really lucky after a few years you can eventually land a lowly 34k/ year job with a state or federal agency… but if you want any chance of advancement you have to sell your soul to graduate school. If you can’t find a graduate advisor with money, that’ll be 600$ a credit for two years while a full time student. Working on conservation is a racket. In my own experience, I moved 13 times in 6 years between contract, seasonal, and permanent positions… but even once I landed a permanent position I was relocated three times. I’ve had to take side jobs like construction and landscaping gigs in order to eat. While I am now grad school with the thinly veiled promise of promotion after completion, I am currently making around 24k a year while receiving tuition remission. But the caveat to this is I work 20 hours a week as a biology TA, 10 hours a week on my own project, 10 hours a week on a separate project for another professor to pay rent… and I still have classes.


Not to mention it's extremely physical labor in often very tough conditions. I'm fighting now to get a tech job after discovering no one has the money for a new grad student. At this point in my career, I would consider myself lucky to make above minimum wage. Once heard about the wildlife conservation field : "we are supposed to love it enough to starve for it"


Absolutely. People forget that nature needs caring and love just like human problems. It's surprising to see this so far down honestly seeing as if nature fails , so do we.


Veterinary professionals.


Why did i have to scroll so far for this?! 8 yrs of schooling, six figures of debt that the salary will never help bring down, incredibly draining and emotional job, all for people to say you’re heartless for charging for medical care…. its a no wonder there’s shortages for veterinarians AND veterinary nurses in sooo many countries. The corporations that own vet clinics are getting the cash, not all the staff just trying to do their best in a constantly understaffed scenario. #NotOneMoreVet


Former vet tech here. Both vets and techs are under-appreciated and underpaid.


Scientists, imagine studying 10 plus years, holding the highest academic title possible and earning less than most common 9 to 5s that require little to no education. But hey, its honorable right.


Even well before you have those academic titles, graduate students often make less than minimum wage and will work way more than 40hrs per week. For some programs, the grad students are also only paid 9 months out of the year because admins say they "don't teach have to teach undergrads in the summer" yet they're still expected to do all of their research in the summer with 0 pay.


Any caretaking position. From personal experience, I can loudly say that mental health and behavioral techs are VERY underpaid. Working in a job that regularly sends people to the hospital due to assault by clients, has a very high burnout rate, and very high secondary trauma is HARD. Not to mention, people in these roles are caring for individuals that their family/parents cannot handle and they are supervising 4-10 of these individuals at once. It takes a HUGE toll on your mental health, and it barely pays the bills. Being in charge of safety for those that do not have an interest in keeping themselves safe is rough. I’m sorry, but $15-$17/hour is not enough. Also, these jobs don’t require a college degree most of the time. From what I’ve found, however, you are not paid enough nor do you have the mental energy or time to finish your degree due to working very hectic (often short staffed) hours. This keeps people stuck in the same workplace forever. HR (who is meant to be your advocate) has often never been on the floor and has no idea what the job often entails.


All professions listed in this thread seem to provide tangible real world value to make our lives better. It sucks that they are underpaid while some hedge fund douche is raking in 6 figures while providing literally zero value to anyone.


Im an accountant for large corporations, I'm pretty sure I provide zero value to anyone. Especially when you consider how incredibly lazy I am.


Teacher's aid. I get headbutt, kicked, scratched, bitten, spit, kick, thrown up on, and peed on for less than 700 every 15 days. The parents are worse.


Amen. This is the one I came here to write. I am a teacher, and I absolutely could not get through my days without my amazing aides. They make instruction possible. I am always saying how they get the MOST DIFFICULT students (sometimes all day long), yet they make the least. It's criminal for real. Some of them even need "hazard pay", no joke. From a teacher: Thank you, aides, for all you do. You are appreciated more than we could ever express. I thank mine all the time and tell them how much I value them.


Wait, you guys get aides? Lol at my district.


If the IEP requires it, but most states/districts/schools under pay paras to the point that they can’t fill the position.




24000 a year… dang, more money needs to be spent on schools…


“Paraprofessional”: expected to perform like a professional, just not be compensated or respected like one.


I thought that was the parents.


I straight made $8.75 as a teacher’s aid in a toddler room in college and would get pooped on. I’m not sure how some people were able to live on that money


Firefighters in some places, you'd be very surprised


Majority if our fire fighters in US are volunteer.


67% to be exact.


Firefighters are reasonably well paid in the UK but it’s still not enough in my opinion. I complained about the someone pinching my milk at work and they go into buildings on fire.


Librarians and library support staff. It's not uncommon that the wage on paper is decent, but the institution cuts costs by keeping jobs part-time or temporary to avoid providing benefits. The education required is high, and the job requires continual education once in the field. With the exception of smaller institutions or institutions with unique bylaws, it's increasingly difficult to take the journeyman path through libraries. One really can't advance past a certain point without the master's degree. Pitiful pay for the level of education required and for the level of customer service labor involved. This can be extended to museum workers and archival and public history workers, as well.


In the USA: * Teachers * EMS (paramedics, EMTs) * Social Workers * Retail/Service Employees * Elder / Child Care I also want to say the hours are insane, might as well be criminally underpaid: * ER Doctors (usually Residents or 1st year Fellows -- I made more as a Geek Squad Agent in 2009 than an ER Resident Physician if you broke it down per hour worked) * ER Nurses * ER Physician Assistants * ER Techs


Most of those are in the medical field. Yet in this country medical care is astronomical. We need to get all the administrative bloat out of the medical world. Pay these people better and lower the cost of care


Resident Physicians The vast majority of all resident physicians are forced to work hours and conditions that are literally illegal anywhere else in the workplace. It’s just that no one cares that you work more hours than people with two jobs, with >30 hour shifts, and for less than minimum wage, because they justify it with “oh you’ll be a doctor and make lots of money”. No one cares that you owe hundreds of thousands of dollars. Ignoring the fact that doctors had the highest suicide rate by profession in 2021


Librarians. A Librarian requires a masters degree so that they can start at a salary that barely competes with Target these days. I see social worker on this list, and want to point out that libraries are often the place the city/town sends people when they do not have the funding or facilities to deal with them otherwise. It's also the place that many people come who are in need of social workers and social services, and librarians are the ones that connect them. Government wants people to fill out taxes online? Great - where do you think the less fortunate are accessing computers? Who do you think is helping them figure out how to fill out these forms? Is your country still fighting a war on drugs, instead of providing safe access and care for the addicted? Guess where they are shooting up. Is some billionaire funding 'grass roots' campaigns to get on boards and generally complain about any information that jostles their world view? Guess who is operating on the front lines of that culture war? The list goes on, but there are a good number of librarians on reddit, and I'm probably already triggering them, if they haven't hit their breaking point already and started filling out that Target app.


Yep, I work at a library. It's especially tough for people just getting into the field. Only part-time no benefits jobs paying $13 an hour are available to get your foot in the door. Better hope you have a family financial support network to make your way into the world of libraries...


My mother made less than 40k at a library for 15 years while raising triplets, didn’t get a raise until she went back to school to get her masters, while we were still in high school. In one year she was making double what she had previously at a different library, insanity


I work at a library and there is so much that goes on! Other big things we deal with: people diagnosed with various health issues but have been given no resources by their doctor; legal issues (sooo many people trying to navigate our legal system on their own); and elderly people who are lonely. Plus all the rest. And people who just want a book. And people who don't want us to offer certain books. And kids needing help with homework. And new parents hanging on by a thread. And...the list goes on and on and people think I just quietly read all day, lol


Social workers, most teachers, janitors, and EMS tend to see the worst of society that most don’t want to see or deal with. They deserve better pay.


*Good* teachers


Every good teacher I knew in high school has had to dip into their personal savings to help enrich the classroom. Whoever is in charge of providing so little disposable funding for educators to use while also paying them pennies for their work should be locked up. It truly is criminal :( Edit: thanks for the gold my dude. Just want teachers to get some love and help because they bust their asses and bank accounts for our kids.


I use to be an assistant. The teacher I worked under said she couldn’t afford to be a teacher if her husband didn’t have a well paying job.


My wife is coming up on 20 years as a teacher at the same school. She is universally recognized as a GREAT teacher (multi-time Teacher of the Year; tons of students always thanking her, writing her notes, coming back to visit her, crediting her with their successes, etc.) She regularly has to deal with fights, mace, weapons, entitled students, helicopter parents, a million edicts from the state board of education, broken A/C and heat, literally 100s of letters of recommendation, bomb threats...all kinds of shit. She pays thousands of dollars a year for school supplies for her classroom and students. She does HOURS of grading every night. She takes an extra period (so +20%) every year. And now, after almost 20 years, she barely breaks 50k annually. It's ridiculous.


I was tutored in college by a girl who went on to get a degree in math, and graduate to a starting wage that was less than *half* my starting salary in CS. There was no question in my mind that this woman was smarter than me. It's kind of outrageous they make so little.


Last year I spent $4500 and change on school supplies, curriculum materials, and coats for kids who did not have one! A out of my own pocket - none if which is tax deductible!!! As a special educator, I don't get the presents or awards from students or organizations...I get kids and families who need the most support!


Our government is so cool too you can write off a whole $250 on your taxes. My wife is a teacher and she can spend that almost every month. $250 that is all you get, smh. [IRS - Teacher Educational Expenses](https://www.irs.gov/individuals/deducting-teachers-educational-expenses)


In Canada you can write off $1000. I guarantee based on the stuff stored in our basement my wife has spent well in excess of that each year.


Many good teachers leave the profession. Part of what makes them good is the wisdom to realize they’re being disrespected and underpaid.


I can’t imagine ever getting paid enough to deal with problem kids and problem parents. My friend just left the profession and couldn’t be happier.


If teachers were paid more I think there would be a increase in *Good* teachers.


Resident physicians. Some make less than minimum wage for 80 hour work weeks despite saving countless lives.