WASHINGTON, DC - Mary Kay Henry, International President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), issued the following statement after the introduction of bills in the House and Senate to raise the federal minimum wage:
"Senator Harkin and Congressman Miller stood up for millions of families who are struggling to get by when they introduced bills that would raise the federal minimum wage for the first time in three years. Today's minimum wage cannot support a family and keeps millions of Americans below the poverty level. In the richest country in the world, that is not acceptable.
"Increasing the minimum wage will make a big difference in the lives of security officers, janitors, fast food workers and all workers who simply can't make ends meet with wages that often hover just above $7.25 an hour.
"Raising the minimum wage is good for workers, but also good for our economy. When working people have money in their pockets, they put it right back into the economy by spending it on gas, groceries or other necessities.
"Both the House and Senate should move swiftly to pass these important bills."