Michael Eastham notes that for some low-income workers, retirement is only a dream It was a striking image. A photo of an 89-year-old man hunched over, struggling to push his cart with frozen treats. Fidencio Sanchez works long hours every day selling the treats because he couldn’t afford to retire. The photo and his story went viral and thousands of people donated more than $384,000 for his retirement. His story is a window into a dark reality: Many low-wage workers say they can’t afford to retire. With no money saved for retirement, home care worker Gwen Strowbridge, 71, of Deerfield, Florida, plans to stay on the job until she can’t physically work anymore. “I can’t see it in the future. I’ll stop working if my health won’t allow me to keep working,” said Strowbridge. Now 71, she works six days per week caring for a 100-year-old woman in Florida. Studies have found that about one-third of low wage workers like Strawbridge say they’ll never be able to afford retirement. The problem is particularly acute among minority women. A 2016 study by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that one-quarter of workers 50 and older say they won’t retire. Among low wage workers, earning less than $50,000 a year, it was 33 percent.
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