Women’s Leader Commends Members of Congress for Introducing Urgently Needed Wage Increase for Millions of Working Families

Statement of Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families

“We will not achieve fair pay for women and working families in this country without a fair minimum wage. That is why the introduction of the Raise the Wage Act in Congress today is a critical step forward for our nation. The three million workers struggling to survive on wages at or below the federal minimum, their families, and our economy urgently need Congress to pass this bill. Over time, it would benefit close to 38 million workers – the majority of whom are women, full-time workers, and at least 20 years old.

By raising the nation’s stagnant minimum wage rate to $12 per hour by 2020 and phasing out the nearly 25-year-old tipped minimum wage of just $2.13 per hour, the Raise the Wage Act would help ensure much fairer pay and provide some economic security for America’s workers, and especially for women. It is no coincidence that a gender-based wage gap persists when women are two-thirds of minimum wage workers, and 67 percent of those paid the tipped minimum wage. This bill would go a long way toward closing the gap that punishes these women and their families.

We commend Senator Murray (D – Wash.) and Representative Scott (D – Va.) for championing the Raise the Wage Act and prioritizing the economic security and well-being of America’s families. Seventy-five percent of people support a minimum wage increase to at least $12. And 29 states, the District of Columbia, and 21 cities and counties have raised their minimum wage rates because they recognize this public demand and the widespread benefits when workers are paid enough to put food on the table. It is past time for Congress to do the same by establishing a national standard.”

About the National Partnership

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help all people meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.

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