BFMW In the News

Dover Post (DE): Striking a balance: Which minimum wage works for businesses, employees?

By Amanda Parris
Dover Post (DE), Jan 29, 2020

When it comes to raising the the minimum pay rate, living wage arguments are at the forefront with business owners concerned about how it will affect them, while legislators want to find a balance that works for everyone. ...

Courtney Sunborn, owner of Ecolistic Cleaning in Lewes, said she has had success paying a living wage. Her employees, who she said are paid well above minimum wage, are more invested in their work.

Medium: Raise the Wage!

By Dan Brook
Medium, Jan 21, 2020

Minimum wage workers are being hit hard by low pay and rising costs. It’s been over 80 years since the United States introduced a minimum wage and over 10 years since it became a measly $7.25, while the cost of living has increased 18% since 2009 (and an even larger 26% for food and a punishing 65% for education). The minimum wage is a poverty wage, not keeping up with the economy — let alone corporate profits, stock prices, worker productivity, and CEO salaries — and it continues to lose purchasing power due to inflation. ...

KOAA News: Colorado workers get bigger paychecks with minimum wage hike

By Andy Koen
KOAA News, Jan 17, 2020

COLORADO SPRINGS — Thousands of Coloradans are getting bigger paychecks this month. The state's minimum wage rose to $12 per hour on New Year's Day. It is the fourth structured minimum wage increase to occur under Amendment 70, which was passed by voters in 2016. ...

Higher wages have been a consistent part of Richard Skorman's business model for his four downtown enterprises. He said he purposely pays his 55 employees a living wage and benefits as a matter of principle. That decision has some benefits.

Cape Gazette (DE): Legislature opens amid calls for higher minimum wage

By Melissa Steele
Cape Gazette (DE), Jan 17, 2020

... Senate Bill 105, which would raise the minimum wage $1 a year until it reaches $15 an hour in 2024, received support Jan. 14 from a Wilmington union representing cleaners and from several legislators. ...

“Increased wages will mean people are spending more and stimulating the economy from the bottom up,” said Alissa Barron-Menza, vice president of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage.

A livable wage is something that should have been done a long time ago, said Rep. John Kowalko, D-Newark. ...

WDEL News Radio: Demonstrators rally for $15-an-hour minimum wage as lawmakers return to Dover (DE)

By Mark Fowser
WDEL News Radio, Jan 14, 2020

They work in restaurants, barber shops, salons, repair shops, and in the service industry. Many of them are having trouble making ends meet as they earn Delaware's minimum wage of $9.25 an hour.

On the steps of Legislative Hall Tuesday, January 14, 2020, as members of the House and Senate met for the first time in the new year, union leaders and unionized workers rallied in support of a $15 minimum wage by 2024. ...

Dover Post (DE): Cleaners union fights for statewide $15 minimum wage

...Courtney Sunborn, owner of Ecolistic Cleaning in Lewes, said in a Business for a Fair Minimum Wage press release that increasing wages will help businesses retain employees.

“Our business is built on trust between us, our clients and our employees, so when we hire, we want to make sure our hardworking employees are going to stay,” Sunborn said. “We want them feeling valued and getting paid fairly, so we start them well above the current minimum wage, which is not a decent floor for Delaware.”

WAER/NPR (NY): Minimum Wage Increase

By John Smith
WAER/NPR (Syracuse U, NY), Jan 3, 2020

New York's minimum wage increased across the state this week to $11.80 an hour – outside of New York City - and one Ithaca business owner says she’s ok with it.  Jan Rhodes Norman owns Ithaca Made and Silk Oak clothing and has already been paying two full-time employees higher than the state’s minimum wage for years now. They earn $15.37 an hour. ...

WBUR: New Year, New Minimum Wage: Some Mass. Businesses Welcome The Increase

By Callum Borchers
WBUR, Jan 1, 2020

Massachusetts keeps chugging toward a $15 minimum wage. Next stop: $12.75. ...

"We do it because it's the right thing to do," said Rob Everts, co-CEO of Equal Exchange in West Bridgewater. "It's also in our own, enlightened self interest. Paying a good, strong wage cultivates loyalty. Turnover here is low, and that helps us at many levels."

WBZ TV/CBS: Massachusetts Business Owners Have Mixed Reactions As Minimum Wage Jumps 75 Cents

By Mike LaCrosse
WBZ TV/CBS, Jan 1, 2020

BOSTON (CBS) — The state’s minimum wage increased on New Year’s Day. It jumped from $12 per hour to $12.75. By 2023 it will be up to $15 per hour.

“Restaurants are, you know, one of the biggest employers in the country, but they’re also the biggest employers at the minimum wage level,” said restaurant owner Josh Lewin.

Lewin is co-founder of Juliet in Somerville where every employee starts out at $15 an hour. He’s a strong supporter of the minimum wage increase. ...

Arkansas Democrat Gazette: $10 minimum wage in state to start Wednesday

By Hunter Field
Arkansas Democrat Gazette, December 31, 2019 

Arkansans earning the state's minimum wage will receive a $1,560 raise in 2020 as the state's bottom wage increases to $10 an hour under an initiated act passed in 2018. Under the voter-approved initiative, Arkansas businesses must pay employees no less than $10 an hour starting Wednesday -- a 75-cent increase from the current $9.25 per hour minimum wage. ... The 2020 wage increase is the second step of a three-year phase-in that will ultimately raise the Arkansas minimum wage to $11 an hour in 2021. ...

US News & World Report: States Raise Minimum Wage, Legalize Pot, Expand Paid Parental Leave in 2020

... The minimum wage – stuck at $7.25/hour at the federal level since 2009 – will rise in 22 states, including Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Missouri, New Mexico and Washington. ... Expect more movement on pay in the coming months as states strive to help the lowest-paid workers better afford the soaring cost of housing, healthcare, and child care. Three additional states – Connecticut, Nevada and Oregon – and Washington, D.C., will boost theirs later in 2020, and a national effort is underway led by groups such as Business for a Fair Minimum Wage and the National Employment Law Project to gradually raise the federal minimum wage to $15/hour by the middle of the new decade.

Asbury Park Press: NJ minimum wage to increase again Jan. 1

By Michael L. Diamond
Asbury Park Press, Dec. 30, 2019

New Jersey's minimum wage for most businesses will rise to $11 an hour from $10  beginning Jan. 1 — Wednesday, the next step on its climb to $15 in 2024. ... The minimum wage hike started July 1 in a bid by Gov. Phil Murphy to jump-start the wages of low-paid workers in a state that has a high cost of living. One recent report found nearly 40% of New Jerseyans couldn't afford basic needs. ...