Congress Must Act Quickly to Secure Higher Minimum Wage

Congress Must Act Quickly to Secure Higher Minimum Wage

As a North Carolina state representative in 2006, Adams backed a $1-an-hour increase in the state's minimum wage, which lifted the wages of more that 100,000 workers.

Last summer, the House voted to raise the minimum wage to $15, but the bill died in the Republican-controlled Senate.

"We do have concerns about more than doubling the federal minimum wage, particularly so quickly, and even more concerns about doing it while small businesses are still dealing with the pandemic and coming out of this economic downturn", said Matthew Haller, senior vice president of government relations and public affairs for the International Franchise Association.

The push for a minimum wage hike has moved to Congress.

"Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the $7.25 federal minimum wage was economically and morally indefensible". "We can no longer tolerate millions of workers not being able to afford to feed their families or pay the rent".

If passed, this would mark the first time the federal minimum wage was raised since 2009. Now, the pandemic is highlighting the gross imbalance between the productivity of our nation's workers and the wages they are paid.

"No one in America should work 40 hours a week making below the poverty line", Biden said. "This legislation is a key part of Democrats' commitment to not only recover from these crises, but to Build Back Better - and to do so in a way that advances justice, prosperity and equality for all Americans". If we're committed to an economy that works for everyone, we need one fair, livable wage for everyone-and that includes workers with disabilities, tipped workers and youth workers. Today, Chairman Scott and Members of the Committee on Education and Labor are reintroducing this bill for the 117th Congress. "We won't accept carve-outs and we won't accept leaving anyone behind".

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Using data on infant deaths in each county from the 2001-18 National Center for Health Statistics mortality files, and data on minimum wage levels from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the researchers examined how many infant lives would have been saved if states had not prevented cities and counties from raising their minimum wages. "This bill is a reasonable step to boost our economy and ensure everyone who works hard in this great country can provide for themselves and their loved ones".

However, analysts say companies that rely on low-wage workers - like restaurants and retail - would bear the brunt of the economic hit.

Nearly six in 10 people who benefit would be women.

Washington Senator Patty Murray is also among the supporters for the bill, pointing out that it would give 32 million Americans a raise, and help raise up traditionally underpaid demographics.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.

Opponents of a $15 federal minimum wage say more than one million people may become jobless because of the impact on businesses, with teenagers, part-time workers, and those with only a high school diploma most affected.

Watch today's press conference here.

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