As state legislatures across the country wrap up their deliberative sessions it’s a good time to review what they accomplished on behalf of working families and small businesses. From Minnesota to Hawaii, states considered and passed minimum wage increases. States also looked at providing seniors with a more secure retirement and low-income workers with the safety of paid leave for illness or family care. These policies represent our vision for the economy, one that is pro-worker and pro-business and makes our workplaces healthier, drives more customers to local businesses, secures a future of prosperity for workers of all ages, and grows our country’s economy.
As the nation looks to rise out of an economic downturn, the failure to maintain a livable minimum wage presents a looming crisis. Studies consistently show that raising the minimum wage is an essential part of rebuilding America’s working class. When the minimum wage is raised, workers can invest more in local businesses and rely less on government subsidies.
Millions of Americans go to work sick every year because they cannot afford to take the time off necessary to get healthy. Millions more risk their financial stability to care for a sick child or partner because they don’t have access to paid time off for family leave. Paid leave for workers is not just an issue of economic security for America’s working class, but also a public health concern as waiters and service workers are forced to expose the public to sickness because they can’t afford to take time off.
The 2014 National Week of Action for Real Prosperity took place the second week of April and it was a huge success! Spearheaded by PSN’s Economic Security Working Group, the Week of Action engaged over 50 legislators in 20 states
Among the policy priorities Colorado State Senator Jesse Ulibarri and State Rep. John Salazar have long sought to elevate, especially during the National Week of Action, is the need to expand Coloradans' access to paid leave. These stories from 9to5.org illustrate the need in Colorado.
In an op-ed, Rhode Island State Senator Gayle Goldin writes that to create real prosperity for all, we must demand that jobs pay a living and equitable wage, create pathways to success, and recognize the complexity of balancing a career while managing a family.
In the lead-up to the White House Summit on Working Families on June 23, 2014, the Department of Labor Women's Bureau is hosting regional forums across the country -- including one in Atlanta, Georgia, which was held today. Georgia State Senator Nan Orrock, who is also the President of the Women Legislators' Lobby and a member of PSN's Board of Directors, gave the opening speech as part of her participation in the National Week of Action
What's it like to live on the minimum wage in this day and age? Michigan state legislators are finding out just that this week as part of the National Week of Action for Real Prosperity Across America. Here's ThinkProgress.org reporting in.
Held as part of the National Week of Action for Real Prosperity Across America, Washington State Senators participated in a work session on Tuesday to address retirement insecurity. “We have a retirement income crisis that threatens Washingtonians and Americans, we are less prepared to retire than in past decades.” said Sen. Steve Conway. “Retirement shouldn’t be a gamble."
As part of the National Week of Action For Real Prosperity Across America, Florida State Senator Dwight Bullard and State Reps. Cynthia Stafford, Victor Torres, Jose Javier Rodriguez, Kionne McGhee, Shevrin Jones, Bobby Powell, Clovis Watson, and Ricardo Rangel are taking the Minimum Wage Challenge. Here's a mid-week check-in.