Times Herald: Gov. Tom Wolf visits Montco to promote minimum wage raise: Willow Grove eatery is backdrop for latest pitch to get Pa. minimum increased

By Rachel Ravina
The Times Herald, Jan 28, 2022. Also in The Reporter, Mainline Times&Suburban

Gov. Tom Wolf visited Montgomery County on Thursday to discuss a topic he’s talked about time and time again: the state’s minimum wage. ... Along with Wolf, several Democratic Pennsylvania lawmakers were present Thursday afternoon at the Willow Grove-based eatery in voicing support to raise the minimum wage. ...

On Thursday, the Montgomery County-based eatery &Pizza served as a backdrop for Wolf’s latest pitch on wages. A spokesperson for the governor’s office told MediaNews Group the company “starts its employees at $15 per hour,” and endorses a higher minimum wage. The pizza chain has 60 locations in the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, according to Kelly Maguire, general manager of &Pizza’s Willow Grove location.

“People can make a living at &Pizza,” Maguire said. “But the reality is too many working Pennsylvanians can’t make ends meet. It is impossible to get by on 7.25 an hour. We need a state minimum wage that says to every worker, wherever they work, we value you.”

She said she started with the company as an hourly worker back in 2018 and has been “promoted several times” since.

“As someone who hires and trains employees, I’ve also seen what a difference &Pizza’s wages, benefits and internal promotions mean for other employees,” Maguire said. “With good pay, and support, people can breath easier about having rent paid. They can put food on the table for themselves and their children. They aren’t worried about bills stacking up.”

“When you’re breathing easier, you’re healthier, and happier because you’re happier, you go to work happier,” she continued. “That creates a much better environment for everyone working, and for your guests. Happy employees make all the difference in ensuring our guests have an excellent experience and keep coming back.”

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