MEDIA RELEASE: Raising Wages NC Statement on $15 Minimum Wage for State Employees In Proposed Budget

RALEIGH (May 29, 2018) — The proposed $15 an hour minimum wage for state employees is a great first step for helping North Carolina’s working families earn enough to afford the basics. The General Assembly should be congratulated for acknowledging that working families need a living wage and recognizing that $15 an hour is the right ballpark for what it takes to make ends meet in North Carolina.

The Raising Wages coalition agrees with these principles and hopes the General Assembly will finish the job and enact a $15 minimum wage for ALL of North Carolina’s employees in state government, local government, and private businesses. If $15 an hour is necessary for state employees to live, then it’s necessary for private sector workers, too. That’s why legislators should pass SB 210/HB 289 to raise the minimum wage for everyone to $15 an hour by 2022.

While a $15 an hour minimum wage is certainly good news for state employees, it's critical to have a budget enacted by traditional democratic means that allows for full debate and assesses the challenges facing our state's working families in our state as well as the need for public investments. By circumventing the standard democratic process, the current budget undermines the legitimacy of this General Assembly and overall trust in our state’s government to deliver what the public needs. Moreover, a budget that continues to cut taxes for big corporations who are delivering those tax cuts out of state will hurt our long-term ability to provide competitive wages to state workers.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Allan Freyer, allan@ncjustice.org, (919) 856-2151;
Michael Young, myoung@faireconomy.org, (919) 724-5615.

Richard Lindayen