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For Immediate Release: July 16, 2015
Contact Bob Keener, 617-610-6766,

KANSAS CITY, MO – Business leaders applauded today’s action by the Kansas City Council to establish a minimum wage of $8.50 an hour on August 24, 2015 that will be gradually raised to $13 by January 2020, and then adjusted annually for the cost of living. This is especially significant because Kansas City is the first Missouri municipality to pass a citywide minimum wage that is higher than the state level (now just $7.65).

Mike Draper, owner of Raygun shirt company in Kansas City and a member of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage, said, “Our starting wage is $12.50 plus money for benefits, and this has helped us grow to over 40 employees in Kansas City and Iowa. An economy thrives when people have money to spend. Raising the minimum wage is the best way to get more people more money to spend in businesses. It's also our best bet in reducing the massive inequality threatening our economy.”

Pam Hausner, CEO of Big Vision Media Group and President of the Kansas City Business Alliance for a Sustainable Economy, said, “As a business owner, I support raising the minimum wage because the welfare of those who work for me is critical to the success of my company and service to my clients. How can I tell my clients I'm looking out for their best interest if I disregard the needs of the people who serve my clients? Raising the minimum wage is good for business, customers and our economy.”

Holly Sklar, CEO of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage, said, “Kansas City’s new minimum wage is a win/win for businesses and workers. It will boost the consumer buying power that businesses depend on to thrive and create jobs. And with better wages, businesses will see reduced employee turnover, increased productivity and higher customer satisfaction. Raising the minimum wage will also decrease the strain that poverty wages place on public assistance. This is a great step forward for Missouri.”

Business for a Fair Minimum Wage is a national network of business organizations, owners and executives who believe a fair minimum wage makes good business sense, including Eileen Fisher, Ben & Jerry’s, New Belgium Brewing, Stonyfield, Dansko Footwear, ABC Carpet & Home, Seventh Generation, American Income Life, Earth Friendly Products, Zingerman’s, Vintage Vinyl, Beanfields Snacks, Uncommon Goods and thousands more.