Social Service Agency Fires $9/Hour Worker For Not Buying A New Car

Erik Sherman
fired business woman carrying...
Shutterstock / marcogarrincha

As low-wage workers are staging walk outs for raises, one Pennsylvania woman who had been earning $9 an hour won a small, but little-noticed victory against her employer. A Pennsylvania court just sided with Shamela Hightower who was essentially fired because she couldn't afford a car on the wages her employer paid, as the Patriot-News reported.

The employer, Bell Socialization Services of York, Penn., has a laudable mission: support the homeless and people with mental health or intellectual disability issues. The group talks of its environment of support and empowerment." But the agency fired Hightower, when her car broke down and she didn't repair her old car or buy a new one. She earned $9 an hour and said she didn't have the money; Bell Socialization Services said having a car was a condition of the job.