High housing costs and long hours at a minimum wage job came down hard on Claudia.*
She tried to make it work, to keep her family of four children sheltered and cared for in a room behind her father’s repair shop in the San Fernando Valley, a vast suburb of Los Angeles. Her mother and brother also lived in that space, an ad-hoc space not zoned for residential living.
But the long days and nights at a $10-an-hour job, plus classes to earn her high school diploma, meant she was away from home from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. The hours affected her children, she said, and had a ripple effect on her.
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