July 15th, 2015
Dear Secretary Clinton:
At the Fight for $15 conference last June, you said that you wanted to be the “champion” of low wage workers, and that you want to fight with low wage workers every day. So why won’t you support a living wage to help them?
As the 2016 election gets underway, is it not important that you take a strong stance on raising the minimum wage? You have not yet proposed a plan that includes raising the minimum wage from the $7.25 federal level to a level that will allow Americans to pay for the necessities of life, except that you don’t support a universal $15 minimum wage.
Today, over half a million people are living below the poverty line in Iowa in New Hampshire. At $7.25 an hour, a single mother with children working a full time job can expect to make approximately $15,000 a year, far less than the $24,000 federal poverty line for a family of four.
For the past several decades, the minimum wage has lost one-third of its purchasing power, and the federal minimum wage hasn’t come close to keeping up with the rate of inflation since 1968. A study by the Economic Policy Institute says that raising the minimum wage to $12 an hour would give thirty-five million Americans a raise.
The Center for American Progress has estimated that just by raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour there would be a 6 percent decrease in the number of individuals on public assistance programs, and would save the country forty billion dollars a year over the next decade.
Raising the minimum wage is a position that has overwhelming support from the public. A recent survey from the [...]