President Obama: Time to Raise the Minimum Wage

President Obama: Time to Raise the Minimum Wage

Published 5:29 PM Eastern - Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Tyler Prell, 202-730-7278

WASHINGTON, DC - After President Obama delivered a speech on the economy today, Mary Kay Henry, President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), issued the following statement:

"The President today laid out a bold framework for how to grow our economy and address the critical economic issue of our time - income inequality. Among the critical proposals he put forward is raising the federal minimum wage. Today marks the 4th anniversary of the last time the federal minimum wage was increased and President Obama clearly restated his commitment to raising it. By raising the minimum wage, we can reduce income inequality in our country and provide dignity to people who work 40 hours a week and still cannot provide for their families. Nobody with a full-time job should live in poverty.

"As they struggle to put food on the table and pay their rent, minimum wage workers aren't standing for it any more. Across the country, we have seen courageous workers go on strike to call attention to the fact that their wages cannot support their families. We stand behind these workers in their effort to raise their wages. We cannot rely on employers to pay a living wage, the federal government must intervene and that is what these workers are fighting for.

"Congress should follow the President's lead and take steps to increase the federal minimum wage as soon as possible so that millions of working families can emerge from poverty and make ends meet."

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With 2.1 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers--not just corporations and CEOs--benefit from today's global economy.

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