Feb 26 2021
Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on the need to raise the minimum wage:
“Although the Senate parliamentarian last night ruled against including a minimum wage increase in the COVID-19 recovery bill coming to the Senate, I continue to support passage of a phased-in, nationwide minimum wage increase to $15 an hour.
“California is already well on its way to a $15 minimum wage and is showing it’s not only possible, it’s beneficial. The state in 2016 passed a law to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour for all employees by 2023 using a stair-step approach similar to the plan proposed by Democrats last month. Many other states have taken a similar approach.
“2021 is the fifth year in a row that California has seen its minimum wage increase by either 50 cents or $1 toward a final level of $15 an hour. Its implementation hasn’t caused the chaos that critics suggested would occur; in fact it has helped address the vast wealth and income inequalities that have become the norm across the United States in recent decades.
“The Congressional Budget Office reported that raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour would boost wages for 17 million people and reduce the number in poverty by almost 1 million. Many experts believe the effects would be even more beneficial for low-income Americans and for the economy because beneficiaries are more likely to spend the additional money they receive, which would both improve their quality of life and boost the economy.
“The federal government has an obligation to ensure that American workers are receiving fair pay for their work and a salary that can provide for them and their families. Raising the minimum wage will help millions, and Congress should act as soon as it can.”