Take Action During August Recess: Urge Your Member of Congress to Raise the Minimum Wage
More than four years after the end of the Great Recession, not only have wages for low- and middle-income workers yet to recover, but low-wage jobs have dominated job growth. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, which translates to just $15,080 per year for a full-time worker - $4,000 below the poverty line for a family of three. This level is decades out of date, and the federal minimum wage for tipped workers—$2.13 per hour—hasn’t increased in more than 20 years.
This is why we must take action and support the Fair Minimum Wage Act, which would raise the wage to $10.10 by 2016 and raise the minimum wage for tipped workers to 70 percent of the minimum wage.
More working adults than ever are depending on low-wage jobs. Since the recession, 58 percent of new jobs have been in low-wage occupations like cashiers and food preparation, and waitresses and waiters are three times more likely to be paid below the poverty line than the general workforce and nearly twice as likely to need food stamps.
The Fair Minimum Wage Act would help 28 million American workers living on the minimum wage make ends meet, including 17 million women, and more than 21 million children have a parent who would get a raise. Raising the wage would also take a huge step toward closing the gender wage gap; women disproportionately work in low-wage occupations, and 71 percent of tipped workers getting a raise would be women.
Higher wages will power economic recovery and growth. Raising the minimum wage would boost consumer demand as low-income workers spend their higher wages at local businesses. The Fair Minimum Wage Act would cause $33 billion in new economic activity, translating into 85,000 new full-time jobs.
The country supports it. Recent polling from Pew Research shows that 73% of Americans support raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour and adjusting it for the cost of living in future years, and Half in Ten’s poll found that 84% support (58% strong support) raising the wage and tying it to inflation.
Enter your ZIP code below to urge your member of Congress to restore a strong minimum wage for America’s workers, especially as they're home all month for August recess. Too many Americans have worked too hard for too long at wages too low to support themselves and their families—it’s time working families are given a raise!