Raise the minimum wage now!

Times are tough, but there are 264,000 people who have it tougher than you.

There were more than 264,000 people in our state at or below the minimum wage in 2010. Keep in mind that the minimum wage in this state hasn’t been raised since 2009 when it went up 10 cents. It sits at $7.25. Here’s an opinion piece written by the Assembly Majority Leader and the New York City Mayor.

A number of progressive groups, including NYSUT, have call for the minimum wage to go up or for the wage to be tied to an index. The New York State AFL-CIO explains it this way:

Modestly increasing the minimum wage every 5 or 10 years makes for great sound bites, but the reality is these modest increases do very little to lift the working poor into a stable income and they do very little for the vast majority of working families.

We need indexation of the minimum wage benefit so that those at the lowest levels of the wage scale have reliable and recurring increases. This is a useful tool to make sure that the bottom rung of wage earners keeps pace with increases in the cost of living. More than that, it will help continually raise the floor, making sure all working New Yorkers are lifted up.

So when you are calling your lawmaker to oppose a Tier 6, why not also throw in a line about boosting the minimum wage. The number to call is (877) 255-9417.

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