More than 3,800 state workers in poverty zone

STATE-NEWSRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Nearly 4 percent of Virginia’s state employees are paid below the federal poverty level. The Richmond Times-Dispatch says state figures show the annual salaries of more than 3,800 state employees are below the federal poverty level of $23,850 for a family of four. The total includes more than 900 workers whose salaries are below the federal poverty level of $19,970 for a family of three. The number of state employees who receive federal assistance such as food stamps has increased from 892 in 2011 to 2,287 in 2013. Jobs in the poverty zone include hospital food service workers and housekeepers, school security officers, mental health workers, deputy sheriffs, corrections workers, secretaries, researchers and associate professors. Sen. Dave Marsden of Fairfax County says state employees’ wages have stagnated for years.

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