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What is blue collar work?

Blue-collar work refers to jobs that involve manual labor or a skilled trade. White-collar jobs, on the other hand, encompass anyone who might work in an office and be expected to wear a white shirt.

Archetypal blue-collar jobs include construction, welding, mechanics or maintenance. Workers are generally compensated with an hourly wage or by piecemeal, while white-collar employees typically work on salary.

The term blue collar is often used interchangeably with working class, which typically refers to people from a lower socioeconomic station — of which Stone certainly is not. And this may in fact be an outdated notion, considering the demand — and high compensation — for skilled blue-collar workers in the labor market these days.

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But does Stone qualify as blue collar?

As for whether acting is considered blue-collar or white-collar labor, that’s a bit less clear.

Stone doesn’t work in an office or draw a salary from a position that comes with 401(k) matching or a communal coffee pot. She’s a member of a union, the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), which is something often associated with blue-collar or trades work.

But it’s hard to overlook the $40 million net worth she has to fall back on — that definitely doesn’t scream working class. Sure, she has struggled for money in her life — even since making it big. A bitter divorce and custody battle led her to occasionally putting her kids’ private school tuition on a credit card.

Regardless, the one thing that’s clear is the outspoken celeb doesn’t care whether anyone agrees with how she identifies or not. And looking to the future, she’s not worried about sustaining her level of success into the next chapter of her life.

“Will I make enough money to stay living where I’m living? Probably not,” she told InStyle. “But the kids will leave home and go to college, and I’ll sell my big, fancy house, and I’ll go live like a normal person.”


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Sabina Wex is a writer and podcast producer in Toronto. Her work has appeared in Business Insider, Fast Company, CBC and more.

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