Worker says companies are ‘systematically’ pushing workers into lower-paying jobs

@leftistmommy/TikTok Antonio Guillem/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘I don’t feel safe’: Worker says companies are pushing workers into lower-paying jobs. Here’s why

'This feels so calculated.'


Phil West


Posted on Feb 9, 2024   Updated on Feb 14, 2024, 12:40 pm CST

Saying it’s “the worst relief I’ve ever felt,” a worker who says she survived recent layoffs at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory claims companies are now seeking to push workers into lower-paying jobs.

The video documenting the near-axing comes from creator Kate (@leftistmommy). Posted Thursday, it’s gotten nearly 50,000 views as of Friday morning.

The Washington Post noted, in its coverage of layoffs at the Southern California lab that’s had a role in past and present space missions, that Congress is to blame.

“Congressional gridlock has thrown sand in the gears of NASA’s search for ancient life on Mars,” the story noted. “Citing funding uncertainties and the failure of Congress to pass a 2024 budget, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is operated under contract by Caltech, on Tuesday announced that it is laying off 8 percent of its workforce, about 530 people, plus another 40 contractors.”

But Kate believes other parties are to blame.

“Yes, I’m thankful to have a job,” Kate says in the video, after recounting the stress around knowing layoffs were coming. “I also don’t feel safe because the layoffs are just going to keep coming for all of us—not just NASA, not just government employees, but everybody.”

She continues, “I really want to encourage the working class—we are all the working class—that these layoffs are being done systematically to get us back into lower-paying jobs. They’re trying to counter-correct for the Great Resignation where people were leaving their jobs, they were asking for more money.”

She adds, “I’m not saying that NASA is consciously doing this. I’m saying the market—which we pretend is like this omnipotent force, but it’s not—the market is wanting to get us back toward people slaving away at their jobs, feeling like they’re so grateful to [be] making $15 an hour.”

In a call to her fellow workers, Kate concludes, “We have to stick together. We have to demand higher wages. We have to demand better benefits.”

@leftistmommy This is the worst relief ive ever felt. #nasa #jpl #economy #recession #budget #politics ♬ original sound – Kate

Commenters felt solidarity.

“This is devastating,” one assessed. “Everyone thinks I’m crazy for trying to get a second job because my salary is decent but it’s the only way I know how to protect myself.”

“Not crazy,” Kate responded. “I have a salary plus as many side hustles as I can.”

Someone else reported, “This is too real. I ‘survived’ 7 rounds of layoffs during my 12 year tenure with Disney. It never, ever got easier and still I stayed for so long.”

“I’m in tech, so same boat,” another said. “Idk how much farther they can push us. ‘Resetting’ salaries that aren’t even ENOUGH to begin with due to inflation.”

One called to “Organize and unionize!”

Kate responded, “You do not have to tell me twice!”

The Daily Dot has reached out to Kate via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Feb 9, 2024, 11:00 am CST