Join RaiseUp Massachusetts as they fight for a new minimum wage law to protect laborers across the state through their Fight for 15 campaign.
No one who works full-time should be paid so little that they cannot make ends meet. Workers need a minimum wage increase to $15-an- hour by 2022. Since June 2014, as the Massachusetts minimum wage bill rose from $8 to $11, our state’s economy added more than 150,000 jobs, and unemployment is at its lowest rate since before the Great Recession. It’s clear that a minimum wage increase and economic growth can go hand in hand.
The goal of this legislation is to give workers a raise. We cannot accept a $15 minimum wage bill that includes provisions that hurt any group of workers or leave vulnerable families behind.
This legislation shouldn’t discriminate against youth who are saving for college or helping their family make ends meet.Teens are only about 10 percent of workers that would be affected by a minimum wage increase to $15 by 2022, but teen workers in low-income families* account for 17.7 percent of their family income. Teen workers are often important wage-earners for their
families, and we shouldn’t cut their pay.
In Massachusetts, college students at public institutions work about 28 hours per week, on average. When students work too much, it can hurt their GPAs and lead to dropouts. Ensuring that teen workers can earn and save money for college will help let college students focus on their studies.
Studies on the impact of minimum wage increases on employment for teens have found little to no effect. Teen unemployment rates since 1990 in the U.S. and Massachusetts track the overall movements of the economy. In 2016, teen unemployment in
Massachusetts and overall unemployment rates fell to their lowest rates in the past 18 years – despite minimum wage increases during this same period.
In states with a sub-minimum wage for teen workers, many employers use that sub-minimum wage to exploit young workers and then discard them as soon as they’re no longer cheaper to hire. A sub-minimum wage policy could also hurt older adults who might be replaced by teens working at a sub-minimum wage.
Learn more by visiting RaiseUpMA.org and joining their campaign to push Bills H.2365 & S.1004 through the state legislature.