RAISE THE MINIMUM WAGE TO BOOST NEW YORK’S ECONOMY AND HELP WORKING FAMILIES
The New York State Legislature hasn’t voted to raise the minimum wage since 2004 — and that’s left 880,000 workers in our state out of pocket and out of luck.
New York has the biggest divide between the rich and poor in the country. State government’s failure to adjust the minimum wage and establish a humane statewide living wage is part of the problem.
Over the last 30 years, the average income of the top 1% of the population in New York has gone up 500 percent — amazing.
And during that time, the average income of the bottom 50% of the population, which includes minimum-wage workers, has gone down 13% — pathetic.
New York’s minimum wage is now stuck at the federal minimum wage of just $7.25 an hour — around $15,000 a year for full-time work, well below the poverty line for a family of three.
A higher wage would put more money into local businesses and local economies all over the state. It would work to boost pay for low-wage workers who make more than the minimum, and it would directly address New York’s worst-in-the-nation income inequality.
It’s time to rebalance the scales. It’s time for New York to raise and index the minimum wage. Raising the minimum wage to $8.50 and indexing it to inflation — so low-wage workers don’t continue to get left behind — is the least we can do. Anything less is simply not adequate.
The Strong Economy For All Coalition and our partners at the Working Families Party and United New York are fighting statewide for an increase in the minimum wage, to help workers, families and local businesses do better in tough economic times.