In this brief, “working class” is defined as individuals in the labor force who do not have bachelor's degrees. This includes high school dropouts, high school graduates, people with some college, and associate's-degree holders.
Types of Working Class Jobs
- Clerical jobs.
- Food industry positions.
- Retail sales.
- Low-skill manual labor vocations.
- Low-level white-collar workers.
The working class (or labouring class) comprises those engaged in manual-labour occupations or industrial work, who are remunerated via waged or salaried contracts. Working-class occupations (see also "Designation of workers by collar colour") include blue-collar jobs, and most pink-collar jobs.
Instead, for those of us in economic policy, "working class" has come to fill in the bottom section of middle class. As Gallup's Frank Newport describes it, it is a "socioeconomic positioning that is below that of what is associated with the middle class but above that which is associated with the lower class."
According to the class model by Dennis Gilbert, the working class comprises those between the 25th and 55th percentile of society. In 2018, 31% of Americans self described themselves as working class.
The majority of nurses identify themselves as being working class and the ONS categorises them below doctors and pharmacists in its social stratification. This position in the social hierarchy leads to unfair discrimination and the injustice of oppression by the more powerful groups.
The Pew Research Center defines the middle class as households that earn between two-thirds and double the median U.S. household income, which was $61,372 in 2017, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. 21 Using Pew's yardstick, middle income is made up of people who make between $42,000 and $126,000.
Someone who earns a salary and has significant autonomy in the workplace is middle class or professional class. That would include many mid-level workers in large companies, teachers, some retail managers, and many medical professionals.
Gallup has, for a number of years, asked Americans to place themselves -- without any guidance -- into five social classes: upper, upper-middle, middle, working and lower. These five class labels are representative of the general approach used in popular language and by researchers.
The middle class (40%) is divided into upper-middle class (14%, earning $76,000 or more per year) and the lower-middle class (26%, earning $46,000 to $75,000 per year). The working class (30%) earns $19,000 to $45,000 per year.
The middle class is a description given to individuals and households who typically fall between the working class and the upper class within a socio-economic hierarchy.
By government standards, "low-income" earners are men and women whose household income is less than double the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). For a single person household, the 2019 FPL was $12,490 a year. That means that a single person making less than $25,000 a year would be considered low income.
White collar workers are expected to do shift work. Many offices are now open 24 hours a day. Certainly, in terms of pay, a routine clerical worker is part of the working class.
Unskilled workers in the class—dishwashers, cashiers, maids, and waitresses—usually are underpaid and have no opportunity for career advancement. They are often called the working poor. Skilled workers in this class—carpenters, plumbers, and electricians—are often called blue collar workers.
Traditional working class: People in this group tend to have more manual professions such as being electricians.
Traditionally the working class has been defined as a social class made up of wage laborers (and their dependents) engaged in material production in industry or agriculture who do not own the means of production they use in their labor.
Pew defines “middle class” as a person earning between two-thirds and twice the median American household income, which in 2019 was $68,703, according to the United States Census Bureau. That puts the base salary to be in the middle class just shy of $46,000.
5.4 Teachers belong to the low middle class where is mostly composed of low-status professional jobs.
A pink-collar worker is also a member of the working class who performs in the service industry. They work in positions such as waiters, retail clerks, salespersons, certain unlicensed assistive personnel, and many other positions involving relations with people.
Meaning of middle class in English. a social group that consists of well-educated people, such as doctors, lawyers, and teachers, who have good jobs and are not poor, but are not very rich: The upper middle class tend to go into business or the professions, becoming, for example, lawyers, doctors, or accountants.
The working class or the working classes are the group of people in a society who do not own much property, who have low social status, and who do jobs which involve using physical skills rather than intellectual skills.
In this analysis, “middle-income” adults in 2021 are those with an annual household income that was two-thirds to double the national median income in 2020, after incomes have been adjusted for household size, or about $52,000 to $156,000 annually in 2020 dollars for a household of three.
Pew defines the lower class as adults whose annual household income is less than two-thirds the national median. That's after incomes have been adjusted for household size, since smaller households require less money to support the same lifestyle as larger ones.