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President Burris Calls On Congress to Raise the Wage

President Burris has sent identical letters to Congresswoman Kendra Horn in Oklahoma City and Congressman Colin Allred in Dallas outlining his support for raising the minimum wage.

 

On behalf of UFCW Local 1000, which represents over 12,000 hard-working Americans in the retail and food industry in Oklahoma and Dallas-Ft. Worth, I urge you to co-sponsor the Raise the Wage Act (H.R. 582/S. 150) sponsored by Representative Bobby Scott and Senator Patty Murray.

 

The Raise the Wage Act will raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.55 this year and gradually increase it over the next five years until it reaches $15 an hour in 2024. After 2024, the minimum wage will be indexed so that it continues to rise along with a typical workers wages. The Raise the Wage Act will also end unfair exclusions for tipped workers, people with disabilities, and youth so that they, too, can benefit from a decent minimum wage.

 

Raising the minimum wage will be good for the economy and stimulate consumer spending. Today’s low-wage workers earn less per hour than their counterparts did 50 years ago but productivity has nearly doubled in that time. If the minimum wage had been raised at the same pace as productivity growth, it would be over $20 an hour today. Increasing the minimum wage would generate $144 billion in additional wages and most of those extra earning will be spent grocery stores and other main street businesses because lower-paid workers spend a greater proportion of their earnings.

 

The Raise the Wage Act would deliver long-overdue raises to a large segment of the workforce. Gradually raising the federal minimum wage to $15 by 2024 would lift pay for nearly 40 million workers — 26.6 percent of the U.S. workforce. A $15 minimum wage would begin to reverse decades of pay inequality between the lowest-paid workers and the middle class.

 

Raising the minimum wage would significantly benefit workers of color and women. Nearly two-fifths (38 percent) of African Americans and one-third (33 percent) of Latinos would get a raise and 56 percent of women workers would benefit.

 

Across the country, there is overwhelming momentum in favor of raising wages for our nation’s lowest-wage workers. Since 2014, twenty-one states, plus D.C., have approved minimum wage increases. California, Massachusetts, New York, and the District of Columbia have approved raising their minimum wages to $15 an hour and Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Arizona, Missouri, Michigan, and Maine have approved minimum wages ranging from $12 to $14.75 an hour.

President Burris has sent identical letters to Congresswoman Kendra Horn in Oklahoma City and Congressman Colin Allred in Dallas outlining his support for raising the minimum wage.

On behalf of UFCW Local 1000, which represents over 12,000 hard-working Americans in the retail and food industry in Oklahoma and Dallas-Ft. Worth, I urge you to co-sponsor the Raise the Wage Act (H.R. 582/S. 150) sponsored by Representative Bobby Scott and Senator Patty Murray.

The Raise the Wage Act will raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.55 this year and gradually increase it over the next five years until it reaches $15 an hour in 2024. After 2024, the minimum wage will be indexed so that it continues to rise along with a typical workers wages. The Raise the Wage Act will also end unfair exclusions for tipped workers, people with disabilities, and youth so that they, too, can benefit from a decent minimum wage.

Raising the minimum wage will be good for the economy and stimulate consumer spending. Today’s low-wage workers earn less per hour than their counterparts did 50 years ago but productivity has nearly doubled in that time. If the minimum wage had been raised at the same pace as productivity growth, it would be over $20 an hour today. Increasing the minimum wage would generate $144 billion in additional wages and most of those extra earning will be spent grocery stores and other main street businesses because lower-paid workers spend a greater proportion of their earnings.

The Raise the Wage Act would deliver long-overdue raises to a large segment of the workforce. Gradually raising the federal minimum wage to $15 by 2024 would lift pay for nearly 40 million workers — 26.6 percent of the U.S. workforce. A $15 minimum wage would begin to reverse decades of pay inequality between the lowest-paid workers and the middle class.

Raising the minimum wage would significantly benefit workers of color and women. Nearly two-fifths (38 percent) of African Americans and one-third (33 percent) of Latinos would get a raise and 56 percent of women workers would benefit.

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