For Immediate Release
Contact: Sara Wallenfang
Statement from Michigan State AFL-CIO President Karla Swift on Sen. Jones’ Minimum Wage Proposal
Senator Jones’ minimum wage bill is an insult to thousands of Michigan workers who are struggling to get by. This proposal is not adequate to lift families out of poverty, and it is intended to stifle any serious attempt to raise wages.
Women represent nearly two-thirds of minimum wage workers. Raising the minimum wage, especially for tipped workers who are predominantly women, will boost women’s economic security and help close the wage gap. Jones is pandering to the Restaurant Association with a meager tipped wage increase of 10 cents per hour. A fulltime waitress making his “improved” wage of $2.65 per hour would only see an additional $4.00 per week.
Every time momentum builds for lifting wages, conservative like Jones say it will cost jobs. Every time they’ve been dead wrong.
Jobs should lift workers out of poverty, not trap them in a cycle of insecurity and government assistance. Although this bill does not offer any real solutions, it is a reminder that, if they decided to do so, Republicans in the legislature could address the critical issue of wages through the legislative process. Now, in an election year, they decide to offer up legislation that is inadequate for workers in a blatant attempt to appease special interests. Michigan voters won’t buy it.