My daughter works at McDonald’s as a manager to help her husband through school. She works from 4 am – noon, rising at 3 am. Her husband gets up with their baby and goes to work at Olive Garden as a waiter at 11 am. His sister watches the baby for that hour; it’s a good setup for the little guy because with their differing days off, he only has to be tended a few hours a week. Her husband gets home at 5 pm, then goes to night school till 10 or 11. It’s hard on them, but worth it.

I don’t understand how the food business works, there’s a lot of intricacies behind the scenes that we JQ Public don’t see. They rush around trying to make sure everyone gets served as they worry about their kids, bills, etc.

She called me yesterday to tell me that because of the new health care laws, McDonald’s was cutting the hours of their regular employees, not the managers, but all others. The workers at McDonald’s will go home after 27 hours, no matter what, so that McDonald’s won’t have to provide them with insurance.

She said they are planning to hire more staff, but in the interim, they will be short-staffed and it’s going to be crazy. They’re already experiencing customer complaints and long lines, but are doing the best they can.

I assume the other fast food companies will do the same thing; I admit I don’t understand the health care laws or implications. The problem I see here is not that I might have to wait for my big Mac, but that the person serving it to me (many of my daughters co-workers are from other countries) is making even less to feed and clothe their kids.

I suppose they could work 27 hours at McDonald’s and 27 hours at Burger King. I don’t see a good solution to this; economically, this seems like it will terribly impact the working poor.