Dear Majority Leader Skelos and fellow Senators:
Minimum wage in New York is $7.25 an hour, the federal minimum. While eighteen other states have a higher wage, in New York it is the same as in West Virginia and Arkansas.
I am sure looking out your windows from your offices in Albany you can see we don’t live in West Virginia or Arkansas and we don’t have their cost of living.
Someone working full-time at minimum wage earns $290 a week, or just $15,080 yearly without any time off. It's impossible to pay for rent, food, transportation, health care and everything else on such a meager salary. It's indefensible that someone who works 40 hours a week would be unable to feed her family.
Increasing the minimum wage will put more money into the pockets of workers who need to spend every cent of their paycheck just to afford the basics -- the people who need it most. While millionaires and billionaires are able to save extra income, low wage workers don't have that option, so the extra money will be spent quickly, giving the economy a boost. The increased demand will create jobs and drive up wages for everyone else. Think of it as “trickle-up” economics.
Please pass a bill that raises the minimum wage to $8.50 and index it to inflation -- so low-wage workers don't continue to get left behind.
I think we can all agree that New Yorkers must take care of their own and increasing the minimum wage is a great way to take care of OUR own!!