BFMW In the News

Chestnut Hill Local: Pa. labor secretary visits Night Kitchen to lobby for higher minimum wage

By Tom Beck
Chestnut Hill Local (PA), June 15, 2022

Pennsylvania Labor and Industry Secretary Jennifer Berrier visited The Night Kitchen Bakery & Cafe in Chestnut Hill June 9 to promote raising of the state’s minimum wage, which is currently at the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour. The wage hasn’t been raised since 2009. ...

Amy Edelman, who co-owns The Night Kitchen with her husband, John Millard, and pays her employees about $15 per hour on average with benefits, said she hosted the event because when people earn more, they have more money to spend.

“Workers are also customers,” Edelman said. “When the minimum wage goes up, workers have more money to spend at businesses like ours.”

MyChesCo: L&I Secretary Visits Philadelphia Bakery to Call for Raise Pennsylvania’s Minimum Wage

MyChesCo (Chester County, PA), June 11, 2022

Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) Secretary Jennifer Berrier on Thursday continued her statewide push for legislative action to raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage during a visit to Philadelphia’s Night Kitchen Bakery & Cafe, a business that supports Governor Tom Wolf’s proposal to raise the minimum wage to $12 an hour with a pathway to $15.

KYW News Radio: Pa. labor secretary touts raising the minimum wage

By Hadas Kuznits
KYW Newsradio, June 10, 2022

PHILADELPHIA -- In the final months of Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration, Labor and Industry Secretary Jennifer Berrier visited a Chestnut Hill bakery to tout the importance of raising the state’s minimum wage, a measure that’s a part of his state budget proposal. The current rate of $7.25 — which hasn’t been raised since the federal government’s hike in 2009 — isn’t even a living wage, Berrier said. ...

Berrier made her case at Night Kitchen on Germantown Avenue Thursday, a bakery that’s only several miles and a brief drive to the New Jersey border, which offers a minimum wage of $13 an hour — 79% more than Pennsylvania. ...

Register-Star: David Bolotsky: Time to raise New York’s minimum wage

Op-Ed By David Bolotsky
Register-Star / HudsonValley360, June 6, 2022. Also Daily Mail.

As a New York business owner, I am invested in our workforce and invested in our state’s economy. That’s why I support raising the minimum wage.

Low-paid frontline workers have been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic and they are getting hit hard by rising prices. If New York lawmakers don’t raise the minimum wage, they will get left behind again. That’s bad for workers and businesses.

The pandemic has made it clearer than ever that businesses paying low wages have more trouble hiring and retaining their workers. A continual cycle of hiring and training new workers is very inefficient and costly for businesses.

CBS News: Bank of America hikes its minimum wage to $22 per hour

By Kate Gibson
CBS News Moneywatch, May 23, 2022

Bank of America is giving its lowest-paid employees a bump in wages to $22 an hour, equivalent to nearly $46,000 a year for full-time workers. The Charlotte, North Carolina-based company's pay increase bolsters the earnings of a large portion of its 174,000 U.S. employees, and follows wage hikes that started with the bank increasing its hourly base to $15 in 2017, $17 in 2019 and then $21 in 2021. BofA previously announced that it plans to gradually raise its base pay to $25 per hour by 2025. ...

Bronx Times: Proposed legislation to increase state minimum wage could up NYC wages to $20 by 2025

By Robbie Sequeira
Bronx Times, April 29, 2022

In 2016, New York state took a major step in boosting its labor industry by incrementally upping its minimum wage to $15 for New York City’s entire workforce by Dec. 31, 2019. But for many NYC-based workers, a minimum wage total that has remained static throughout the COVID-19 pandemic has not met the rising costs of living in the city and the weight of global inflation on their paychecks.

Harlem World: Workers, Lawmakers, Business Leaders Rally For Minimum Wage Raises From Harlem To The Hudson

Harlem World Magazine, April 28, 2022

Today, a coalition of workers, community groups, labor unions, and business leaders launched a new campaign to increase the minimum wage across New York State and ensure it never falls behind again. The debut of the new coalition, Raise Up NY, follows the introduction of amended legislation from Sen. Jessica Ramos and Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner, chairs of their respective chambers’ Labor Committees. ...

Business Insider: A pizza chain owner says there needs to be higher wages and more empathy offered to workers in the restaurant sector

By Zahra Tayeb
Business Insider, Feb 19, 2022

The owner of a pizza chain said he's not concerned about the ongoing labor shortage in the US. Michael Lastoria, CEO of &pizza, a restaurant chain in Washington, DC, told Insider that a "shortage of imagination" is the real problem facing the US. ...

According to Lastoria, the pandemic highlighted issues about the restaurant industry, in particular, which have remained unsolved for decades. These problems include low wages, lack of benefits, dangerous working conditions and the cyclical nature of firing and re-hiring staff when convenient for employers, he said. ...

Forbes: Petals With Purpose: How Flowers For Dreams Is Helping Local Communities Bloom

By Christopher Marquis
Forbes, Feb 14, 2022

Steven Dyme found himself in the flower business by accident. During his teen years, just after graduating high school, he and his future co-founder, Joseph Dickstein, started selling flowers at graduations to help pay for college while donating a portion of the profits to help outfit Chicago area students in need with school supplies. In 2012, they co-founded Flowers for Dreams ... with the goal of adding a modern twist to one of the most traditional of gifts: to use beautiful bouquets to advance causes of justice & charity in the community (the company donates 25 percent of its profits each quarter through the Flowers for Dreams Foundation).

Inc.: With Omicron, Supply Chain Issues, and Spiraling Inflation, Businesses Call on Congress for More Aid

By Melissa Angell
Inc., February 10, 2022

Some businesses aren't just hungry for more federal aid -- they're famished. 

Everyone hoped that 2022 would welcome a sanguine post-pandemic future -- one that teased the promise of a closer return to "normal." But the Omicron variant, supply chain disruptions, and a spiraling inflation rate ... have made that vision seem quaint. Meanwhile, the federal programs that doled out Covid aid during the pandemic are mostly depleted. 

The combination of challenges has encouraged some business owners to appeal to lawmakers for more aid. ...

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. ...

Bucks County Courier Times: Gov. Wolf, Democrat leadership visit Willow Grove pizza shop to press PA lawmakers to raise the minimum wage

By Damon C. Williams
Bucks County Courier Times, Jan 27, 2022. Also in Yahoo News, The Intelligencer

Gov. Tom Wolf and Democratic leadership want workers in Pennsylvania to have a bigger slice of the pie. That was Wolf's message, when he, House Democratic Leader Joanna McClinton and State Sen. Art Haywood stopped at &Pizza in Willow Grove Park mall on Thursday to once again press the state legislature to raise the minimum wage. ... Wolf said nearly 25 percent of workers in Pennsylvania, or 1.5 million Pennsylvanians, would get a boost in pay at $15 per hour. ...

Kelly Maguire, general manager of &Pizza, said she has witnessed "firsthand what &Pizza’s wages and benefits" mean for staff. They pay workers $15 an hour. 

Patch: Gov. Wolf Visits Montco To Call For Raising PA Minimum Wage

By John Campisi
Patch, Jan 27, 2022

Gov. Tom Wolf made a stop in Montgomery County Thursday to call for a raise in the state's minimum wage, saying that it is disheartening that Pennsylvania hasn't raised its minimum wage in 15 years. Wolf was joined by state and local officials during his stop at [&pizza] ...

Also speaking at the event was Kelly Maguire, the store manager at the & Pizza Willow Grove location.

"Fair pay is absolutely essential to & Pizza's business model," she said. "All of our work counts for nothing if our people cannot live on the wages we pay them."

Maguire said the reality is that "too many Pennsylvanians can't make ends meet." ...

Boston Globe: Omicron whips through the workforce, pushing overstretched staffs to the brink

By Katie Johnston
Boston Globe, Jan 8, 2022

As Omicron whips through the workforce, caregiving agencies are turning away new patients. Restaurants are shutting down. Construction jobs are being delayed. Retailers, including Macy’s, are limiting hours. ... In Massachusetts, 12,213 public school staff members — nearly 9 percent — tested positive over the two-week period ending Wednesday. ...