You’d have to be living under a rock not to know the Unions and their multitude of ‘raise the wage’ front groups have been hollering for a minimum wage hike. While the President seems to be talking the talk, his Democratic held Congress led by Harry Reid are not walking the walk. They failed to pass the bill!
So, here comes the bus! A who’s who of the Left in NC is hopping on board and also, Organizing for Action. GOODY! The circus is coming to Greensboro and Raleigh.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contacts: Jeremy Funk, 202-470-5878
April 30, 2014 Blake Williams, Traveling Press Sec., 407-902-7399
***MEDIA ADVISORY for Thursday, May 1st, 2014***10:30am ET in Greensboro***2:30pm ET in Raleigh***
The “Give America a Raise” Bus Tour Comes to The Tar Heel State
With Too Many North Carolina Workers Struggling to Survive on $15,000 a Year,
Labor Leaders, Faith Leaders, University Professors and Low-Wage Workers Will Join Stops Along the 20-State Tour and Call on NC Republicans in Congress to Raise the Minimum Wage to $10.10
Washington DC – Americans agree: No one who works full-time should live in poverty. Yet that’s exactly what’s happening to workers around the country earning minimum wage. The federal minimum wage has stayed the same since 2009, but what hasn’t is the price of food, gas, utilities, and basic necessities under inflation, making it nearly impossible to get by anywhere in America on $7.25 an hour or $15,000 a year. It’s long past time for Congress to give America and North Carolina a raise. And to help drive the point home, Americans United for Change has hit the road with the 20-State “Give America a Raise” Bus Toursupporting the sensible, job-creating plan before Congress to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour. The stop comes on the heels of U.S. Senate Republicans including Richard Burr voting on Wednesday to block even having a debate on legislation raising the minimum wage to $10.10. Unfortunately for Senator Burr, Senate Democratic Leaders have vowed to bring it back to the floor again and again until it passes.
The Next Stops on the ‘Give America a Raise’ Tour: Greensboro, NC on Thursday, May 1, 2014 at 10:30am ET, and then later the same day in Raleigh, NC at 2:30pm ET. With the backdrop of a 45’ long, 16-ton anti-poverty billboard on wheels and with invaluable support from Progress North Carolina Action, Faith in Public Life, AFL-CIO, Action NC, Working America, NC Council of Churches, Ecumenical Poverty Initiative and Organizing for Action, Americans United will be joined by local labor leaders, faith leaders, University Professors, and low-wage workers to call on Senator Richard Burr and Republicans in Congress to get their priorities straight and support the Harkin-Miller bill raising the minimum wage to $10.10. *SEE DETAILS BELOW.
NORTH CAROLINA BY-THE-NUMBERS: A recent report from the Center for American Progress Action Fund found that raising the minimum wage to 10.10 would increase wages for 735,000 workers in North Carolina by more than $1.6 billion. According to MIT, the living wage in Greensboro is $ 18,979 and $18,804 in Raleigh to be able to afford housing, medical care, transportation and food. If full-time North Carolina workers made $10.10 an hour, they’d earn $21,008 a year.
Brad Woodhouse, President, Americans United for Change and Raleigh native: “Unfortunately, North Carolina’s Tea-Party beholden Republican Congressmen and Senator Burr are only interested in minimum tax responsibility for millionaires and huge corporations that outsource jobs, not in helping hard-working American families climb out of poverty and one rung closer to the middle class. That’s obvious from the same old Paul Ryan budget House Republicans just voted for that slashes taxes by $5 trillion for the likes of the billionaire Koch Brothers and maintains billions of dollars in subsidies for Big Oil at the same time it slashes food stamps for the most vulnerable. Speaking of food stamps, a recent report found that raising the minimum wage to $10.10 would cut down federal food stamp spending by $46 billion over the next 10 years – and lift millions of people out of poverty. Astonishingly, State House Speaker and U.S. Senate hopeful Thom Tillis wants to do away with minimum wage laws altogether, because apparently he thinks North Carolina’s minimum wage workers that include child care providers, janitors, and nursing assistants and who are 35 years old on average are living too high on the hog at $15,000 a year. That’s a position so extreme and out of touch with reality it would make sweat shop operators in China blush.”
“But the Harkin-Miller bill is not just an anti-poverty and pro-fiscal responsibility bill, it’s also a pro-jobs bill,” added Woodhouse. “Millions of people with more money to spend on goods and services means businesses will need to hire more workers to meet the demand. Decades’ worth of research done after previous minimum wage increases shows nothing but net economic benefits as a result, which is why so many successful business leaders and over 600 economists including seven Nobel Laureates are calling on Congress to raise it again now. On the road, we’ve met with many small business owners on the forefront of this movement who didn’t wait for Congress to act – who are proving Tea Party rhetoric wrong: that you can pay your workers a fair wage and still be successful. One small business owner talked about how paying her employees more meant that they would come to work with purpose and that she could hold them to a higher standard. ‘It’s common sense,’ she said ‘the current minimum wage will get you minimum work. Higher minimum wage gets you less turnover and more productivity.’ Businesses need customers to survive, so why won’t Senator Burr help create more of them: by raising the minimum wage and putting more money in the pockets of 30 million consumers.”
STOP 1: THE ‘GIVE AMERICA A RAISE’ BUS TOUR COMES TO GREENSBORO
WHO: Americans United for Change
Dr. Andrew Brod – UNC-Greensboro, Ctr. for Business & Economic Research
Ceirra Beauford – Wendy’s Employee in Greensboro, mother of 2-year-old daughter
Rev. Julie Peeples – Pastor of Congregational United Church of Christ
Rev. Arnetta Beverly – Pastor of St. Matthew’s United Methodist Church
Carolyn Smith – Working America, NC Exec. Dir.
WHERE: Beloved Community Center, 417 Arlington St, Greensboro, NC
WHEN: Thursday, May 1 at 10:30 am ET
STOP 2: THE ‘GIVE AMERICA A RAISE’ BUS TOUR COMES TO RALEIGH
WHO: Americans United for Change
Dr. Elizabeth Ananata – Duke University Economist
Shalief Johnson – Burger King Employee in Raleigh, father of five children
David Mowers – Owner, Dave’s Marine Services
John Richardson – Regional Minister of Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Rick Edens – United Church of Chapel Hill
MaryBe McMillan – NC State AFL-CIO, Sec. / Treas.
WHERE: Martin St. Baptist Church, 1001 E Martin St, Raleigh, NC
WHEN: Thursday, May 1 at 2:30 pm ET
Economic Policy Institute: Raising the minimum wage to $10.10 would generate $22 billion in economic activity and create 85,000 net new jobs
Minimum Wage Raise Would Reduce Food Stamp Spending By $46 Billion Over Decade: CAP Report
Low Wages Cost Taxpayers A Quarter-Trillion Dollars Every Year: Think Progress
Six In Ten Small Business Owners Want A $10.10 Minimum Wage: Think Progress
VIDEO: Center for American Progress Action Fund: ‘6 Surprising Facts About the Minimum Wage’.
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities: Proposal to Strengthen Minimum Wage Would Help Low-Wage Workers, With Little Impact on Employment
National Employment Law Project: ‘The Most Rigorous Research Shows Minimum Wage Increases Do Not Reduce Employment’
Center for American Progress Action Fund: ‘Raising the Minimum Wage Would Help, Not Hurt, Our Economy’