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Congressional Democrats today introduced a new bill to substantially raise the federal minimum wage – to $12 by 2020 -- tie future increases to rising overall wages, and incrementally raise the minimum wage for tipped workers until it equals the overall federal minimum. Prompted by the growing ‘Fight for $15’ movement among fast food and allied workers, as well as a wave of higher wage campaigns in cities across the country, the new federal bill sets down a higher baseline marker for minimum wage efforts nationally. The proposal would boost hourly pay for 35 million workers in the U.S.

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State Lawmakers Pushing Michigan Two Huge Steps Back on Minimum Wage

The Michigan legislature is expected to give final approval soon to a bill that would bar local governments, including individual cities, from enacting higher minimum wage and other worker benefit measures. The move, pushed by Republican legislators at the behest of powerful business lobbying groups, runs counter to the state’s long tradition of supporting local control “home rule” for Michigan’s municipalities.

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Minimum Wage Fights Stirring in the Bluegrass State

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear this week signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for state government workers from the current federal minimum of $7.25 per hour to $10.10, and from $2.19 to $4.10 for tipped state employees, with the increases taking effect July 1. The order also requires a minimum wage of $10.10 to be paid to employees of contractors in new or renewed state contracts. In Lexington, the county council held a hearing this week on a proposal to raise the minimum wage there to $10.10 over three years, and a council committee may vote on the plan in two weeks.

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New York State Wage Board Hears Call from Workers and Advocates for $15 Fast-Food Minimum Wage

A packed hearing of a special New York State Wage Board today in the City Council chamber in Buffalo saw dozens of workers, advocates and supporters testify in support of a $15 per hour wage floor for the state’s fast-food industry, which employs about 180,000 workers. Today’s hearing was the first of four to be convened this month, in response to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s dramatic call for the state to take action to raise fast-food workers’ wages.

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Los Angeles Becomes Largest City to Adopt $15 Minimum Wage

UPDATE June 3, 2015 - Today, Los Angeles became the largest U.S. city to adopt a minimum wage of $15, giving hundreds of thousands of low-wage workers the pay raise they demand and need, and showing that $15 per hour is no longer just a slogan, but tangible reality. By a vote of 13 to 1, the L.A. City Council tentatively approved a measure setting the city’s wage floor to $15 by July 2020 for large businesses and by July 2021 for smaller businesses and certain non-profits. Beginning July 2022, the minimum wage will increase at a rate based on the cost of living.

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Prompted by Growing Fight for $15 Movement, NY Governor Moves to Raise Wages for Fast-Food Workers

If anyone still doubted the ability of workers to organize and win substantial minimum wage gains, those doubts should have disappeared yesterday when New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that his administration will convene a special wage board to review and recommend higher wage rates for fast-food workers in the state. The governor’s move is clearly a response to the growing Fight for $15 movement, which began with fast-food workers in New York City less than three years ago. That movement has expanded nationally, with large-scale strikes and protests joined by other groups of workers, including homecare, airport, hotel, warehouse and retail workers.

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Fight for $15 Movement Grows With Largest Low-Wage Worker Protests in U.S. History

From the Midwest plains and the Great Lakes, from the Deep South to the great Northwest, from the big cities on the East Coast to the port cities of California – in 230 cities and towns across the country April 15, 2015 marked the largest protests by low-wage workers in the nation’s history.

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