Compared to many fast-food workers, Erica Bentencourt has a fairly set schedule. She is supposed to work in the kitchen at the Holbrook Burger King Tuesday through Saturday, opening at 5 a.m. and leaving at 2 p.m. But when coworkers call in sick, she is often asked to stay late or come in on her day off. When business is slow, she is sent home early.
Working extra hours means she has to scramble to find child care for her 9-year-old son. But working fewer hours is worse.
“When they start to cut hours, it affects me paying my bills,” said Bentencourt, 33.