In his 2014 State of the Union, President Obama announced, “It’s time to give Americans a raise.” President Obama called on Congress to raise the national minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour and index it to inflation. The President has also made clear that even as he continues to try to work with Congress, he won’t wait for them to act. That’s why, in the meantime, the President has worked with business leaders, governors, mayors, and activists to find ways to raise wages for millions of working Americans.
As part of the White House Year of Action, the President has signed an Executive Order to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 for individuals working on new federal service contracts, introduced a new rule to expand access to overtime pay, and two new Executive Orders protecting workers from retaliation and encouraging equal and fair pay.
The reality for too many Americans is that they are working harder and longer and still struggling to get by. No American should be working 40 hours a week and still have to live or raise a family in poverty. The face of the minimum wage has changed; nearly 90 percent of the workers who would benefit from raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour are 20 years old or older, and the average age is 35 years old. More than a third are married, and over a quarter are parents. In fact, nearly 16 million children have at least one parent whose paycheck would increase as a result of passing this legislation.
Raising the minimum wage nationwide will increase earnings for millions of workers, giving them more money to spend in the community, and boost the bottom lines of businesses across the country.
Today, we’re asking you to help us identify and honor local leaders and ordinary Americans taking initiative, often at great personal sacrifice to raise wages for working women and men around the country. Nominate a Champion of Change for Raising the Wage by midnight on Wednesday, June 11. Nominees may include:
- Community leaders who worked to raise wages in their city or state
- Citizens who have raised wages at their own business
- Advocates who fought for better pay and benefits on the job
- Community leaders who helped to organize grassroots efforts around this issue
- Citizens who created innovative tactics to engage the public to support raising wages
Click on the link below to submit your nomination (be sure to choose Raising the Wage in the "Theme of Service" field of the nomination form):
We are looking forward to hosting this event and to highlighting the great work communities across the country are doing to advance fairness, opportunity, and stability for America’s working families.
Carri Twigg Is Associate Director of the Office of Public Engagement.