From July 1, workers in several states will be entitled to a higher minimum wage.
Thanks to a law enacted three years ago, Connecticut residents who currently earn $ 13 an hour will have an increase of $ 14. Meanwhile, tipless workers in Washington, DC, will start earning an hourly wage of $ 16.10. Oregon workers will also start earning a minimum wage of $ 13.50, although due to a staggered wage system, rural residents will earn one dollar less and Portland subway residents will earn 1.25 dollars above the standard wage. And in Nevada, wages will rise to $ 10.50 for workers without health benefits and $ 9.50 for workers with benefits.
It is a measure celebrated by some advocates and companies.
“With the federal minimum wage locked in an abysmal $ 7.25 an hour, state increases are essential for workers, businesses and the economy,” Holly Sklar, CEO of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage, a network national business owners and executives advocating wage increases for workers, said in a statement. “Increases in minimum wages make it possible for workers to pay for the basics and strengthen consumer spending on which companies depend.”
Entrepreneurs from across the country joined the statement in support, including Constance Palaia, the owner of the Del Rogue Motel in Grants Pass, Ore.
““With the federal minimum wage stuck at $ 7.25 an hour, state increases are essential for workers, businesses and the economy.””
“We have a minimum wage of $ 15 because we want our staff and their families to have a safe and healthy life,” Palaia said. “Our employees are fantastic and stay with us, something unusual in the high-turnover hospitality industry and has positioned us well for the 2022 travel boom. Raising the minimum wage will help Oregon build a stronger economy and more resilient companies “.
Not only do states raise their minimum wages. Los Angeles employees will also see their minimum wage increase to $ 16.04 from $ 15 an hour starting July 1, while Chicago workers will also get an increase of more than $ 15 an hour for the first time to earn $ 15.40 an hour. In Minneapolis, workers will start earning $ 13.50 an hour if they work in companies with less than 100 people, although they can earn $ 15 an hour if they work for a larger company.
In 2020, more than 73 million workers over the age of 16 were charged an hourly rate in the U.S., with approximately 1.1 million of them earning equal to or less than the federal minimum, according to government data. The U.S. federal minimum wage has remained at $ 7.25 since 2009. Several states continue to pay workers the minimum required, including North Carolina, Kentucky, Indiana and others.
““In just 7% of counties across the country a full-time worker with a minimum wage can afford a one-bedroom apartment with a fair market rent.””
The left-wing Institute of Economic Policy has said that if the country raised the federal minimum wage to $ 15 an hour, workers would receive more than $ 108 billion extra and incomes would increase to 1 in 3 black workers.
During his first State of the Union address in March, President Joe Biden made a push to raise the federal minimum wage, a proposal Democrats tried but failed to enact last year. “Raising the minimum wage to $ 15 an hour,” Biden told a lawmaker hearing.
While workers’ advocates have long been meeting for a federal minimum wage of $ 15, even that may not be enough with a rising cost of living. Inflation is peaking at 40, and the National Low Income Housing Coalition, a DC-based affordable housing group, estimated in 2021 that workers should earn $ 20.04 an hour for a modest rent of a room.
“In no state, metropolitan area or county can a worker who earns the current federal minimum wage or state minimum wage be allowed a decent two-bedroom rental home with a fair market rent working a standard 40-hour week,” he said. say the group. “In just 7% of counties across the country a full-time worker with a minimum wage can afford a one-bedroom apartment with a fair market rent.”
Republicans have been reluctant for years to raise the federal minimum wage because of conservative groups’ arguments that it would negatively affect small businesses and raise prices for consumers, although some conservatives have accepted the idea of an increase. Most Americans support a federal minimum wage of $ 15, according to a 2021 Pew Research Center survey.