Rewarding Work

DE: State Set to Up the Minimum Wage

Delaware joins a number of states in moving closer to a higher minimum wage. A bill to raise the minimum by $1.00 over 2 years is moving forward and has the support of the Governor. Delaware's current minimum wage is $6.15, so the increase will bring the minimum to $7.15. Note: This post has been corrected.

Beyond the Minimum Wage: New Policies to Raise Wages

In our Dispatch this week, Progressive States took a look at what state and local governments are doing to raise wages beyond the basic fight to raise the base minimum wage. And, as you'll see, they are doing a lot, pioneering a whole new progressive policy committed to making work pay and making public policy serve that goal.

Progressive States Board Member Leads Charge to Protect 25,000 Workers

New York Assemblyman Adriano Espaillat, a member of Progressive States' board of directors, successfully passed a landmark bill protecting day care workers.

ALEC Pitches Downward Spiral

The minimum wage is at an historic low. This moral travesty has sparked campaigns in states across the country to use legislative and ballot issue processes to raise the minimum and improve people's lives. As Forbes reports, that has some corporations nervous.

CO: Gov. Owens Continues Rightwing Record

Colorado's Governor Bill Owen achieved the dubious personal record of eighteen vetos in one day, blocking bills to make health care more affordable, education more available and workplaces safer:
Owens vetoed one of the Democrats' top bills of the session on Friday by rejecting Senate Bill 1, a measure that called for the state to join other states in purchasing prescription drugs at a discount by buying in bulk...Five of the 18 bills were related to health care.

Wal-Mart Increases Poverty

Paying terrible wages was never likely to be a route to economic growth, so it's hardly surprising that research continues to show that Wal-Mart's growth undermines local economies. The most recent study is in the June 2006 issue of Social Science Quarterly (subscription).

MA: Senate Votes for $8.25 Minimum Wage

Back in 1968, the federal minimum wage was $1.60 per hour-- or if adjusted for inflation -- $9.16 per hour. Yes-- almost forty years ago, the minimum acceptable wage in this country was over $9 per hour.

UT: Union Payroll Deduction Ban Unconstitutional

As part of the rightwing attack on speech they dislike, a 2001 Utah law barred local governments from allowing public employee unions to collect funds through voluntary government payroll deductions. This attack on both unions and local government home rule was struck down by U.S.

NY: Protecting Domestic Workers From Abuse

The New York Times has an excellent story that encapsulates the American dream and a legislator helping fight to make it more achievable. David Mejias' parents are immigrants. His parents' hard work paid off.

NC: Minimum Wage Moving Forward

North Carolinians for Fair Wages is optimistic about their likelihood of securing a minimum wage increase this year, but notes that an outpouring of public support could still make a huge difference for NC workers. The current bill includes an $0.85 increase in the minimum wage, but the goal of the coalition is to achieve a $1.00 increase tied to inflation.