US Labor Secretary Releases Statement on the Need to Raise Minimum Wage

Thomas E. Perez releases a statement through the Department of Labor

U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez released the following statement on the five-year anniversary of the last increase in the federal minimum wage:

“It’s been exactly five years since workers at the bottom of the income ladder have gotten a raise. Since then, the cost of a gallon of milk, a week of child care, a month’s rent and everything else a family needs has gone up. President Obama believes five years is far too long, and a clear majority of Americans agree. Too many people are working harder but falling further behind, and it’s just plain wrong that men and women working full-time in American should have to raise their families in poverty.”

He then went on to say that an increase to $10.10 would benefit 28 million people by giving them a little bit of breathing room and peace of mind.

“It would benefit their bosses as well,” Perez said. “Employers of all sizes and in varied sectors have told me they see higher wages as a sound business investment. They know that it boosts productivity and reduces training costs. They know that, in an economy driven by consumer demand, more money in people’s pockets means more customers for them.”

Perez said that 3 out of 5 small business owners support the wage increase, and that even though 13 states have raised their minimum wage since 2013, congress has failed to act on behalf of all workers.

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