Union Organizer (03:13)
The Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago offered De'Juan Jackson a job and he quit Walgreens. His income doubled and his work hours increased. The union holds a meeting to address support for a one day strike.
Life Achievements (03:21)
Emilia Stancati has worked in restaurants the majority of her life. She reflects on returning to waitressing and immigrating to the U.S. at the age of 10.
Working Two Jobs (04:37)
Hilton Kennedy III worked two jobs and moved into a bigger home in preparation for the birth of twins; the babies died before birth. Kennedy struggles to learn how to complete closing paperwork as a requirement for a promotion. His girlfriend returns to Mexico to spend a week with her mother.
Financial Security (03:14)
With Jackson's new job, he and Takita Akins feel financially comfortable. They enjoy a meal out and shop for shoes for Akins.
House Hunting (04:01)
Elizabeth and Jose Merino examine two houses for sale; Elizabeth's parents will be moving in with them. Housing costs in Montgomery County, MD are among the highest in the U.S. The couple decides to make an offer on a house.
"House Poor" (04:53)
Percy and Beverly Evans reflect on home ownership and filing for bankruptcy. Percy looks through items in his "man cave" and dances to music.
"American Dream" (04:06)
The Merinos do a final walk through of the house they placed an offer on. The monthly payment is approximately $1,800. Kennedy returned to the U.S. for better opportunities, but notices the cost of living goes up faster than his wages.
Money Management (04:17)
Jackson and Akins pay bills with check-cashing— an option that costs consumers 4-5% of each paycheck. Basketball helps Jackson find peace. He discusses his anger issues and relationship with his father.
Recovery Program (02:03)
Stancati receives an opportunity to speak to a group of kids about her recovery and earn $500.
Working through a Temp Agency (04:45)
Percy Evans lost his job during the recession and now performs janitorial services. See a comparison of jobs lost and jobs gained. Percy spends time at a senior center with friends who have retired; they reflect on the recession and retirement.
Home Ownership Documentation (03:17)
The Merinos review and sign the paperwork for purchasing a new home. The purchase price is $313,700, but they will pay $531,049 over the life of the loan.
Counting on a Promotion (02:21)
Kennedy's boss at Google refused to give him a day off to take an exam for his job at Sweet Tomatoes, so he quit. He arrives at Google to get his last paycheck but it is not there. Kennedy and fellow Sweet Tomatoes coworkers take the food safety exam.
Work and Faith (04:03)
Jackson's new job at Fight for 15 can be stressful; Akins had to adjust her work schedule. Akins' church choir celebrates its anniversary. Akins and Jackson discuss living paycheck to paycheck. See a preview of the next episode of "Hard Earned."
Credits: Fight for Fifteen: Episode 5—Hard Earned (00:40)
Credits: Fight for Fifteen: Episode 5—Hard Earned
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