Living Wage Laws: Worth the Effort?

Source: Stephanie Luce, Labor Notes, February 27, 2012

Almost 20 years ago a “living wage” campaign by pastors and union organizers in Baltimore caught the attention of activists around the country. It looked like a way to address the fact that so many people were working but were still poor.

Living wage activists have accomplished a lot since then, winning more than 125 living wage ordinances in cities and counties, three city minimum wages, and state and federal minimum wage increases. Eight states have indexed their minimum wage to inflation because of activist pressure, and campaigns to raise and index state minimums are underway in 10 more states.

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