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Chicago, IL, June 9, 2017 – Today Chicagoland business owner David Borris, owner of Hel’s Kitchen Catering, urged Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign recently-passed legislation gradually raising the state’s minimum wage to $15. Borris joined State Rep. Will Guzzardi and State Sen. Omar Aquino at a press conference supporting the bill that the Illinois General Assembly passed last week.
Borris cited numerous business benefits a higher minimum wage would have for his Chicagoland catering business, his fellow Illinois business owners and the state economy as a whole.
“Raising the minimum wage is pro-business,” said Borris, a member of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage and the Main Street Alliance. “Local small businesses have a deeply personal interest in the financial health of the communities we do business in. The wellbeing of our customer base and our workforce shows in our bottom line. A healthy economy needs money circulating widely in a virtuous cycle of rising wages, consumer demand and job creation. That’s a recipe for success.”
Borris and other members of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage say that raising the minimum wage will boost the consumer spending that businesses depend on to survive and grow. Business leaders support a minimum wage increase because it will lead to lower employee turnover and reduce the hiring and training costs associated with higher turnover. Businesses will also benefit from increased productivity and greater customer satisfaction.
“Gradually raising Illinois' minimum wage to $15 is the smart thing to do for our state, our businesses and our people,” said Dan Sherry, owner of Kennedy’s Creative Awards in Waukegan. “We start our employees now at $12 an hour. Our staff turnover is low, which results in fantastic customer service and repeat customers. When more businesses pay higher wages and workers have more money to spend, it will create a stronger Illinois business climate.”
Tim Frick, owner of Mightybytes in Chicago said, “Raising our state’s minimum wage to $15 is smart business and smart policy to jump-start our economy now and strengthen it over the long term. Workers at one business are customers at another. We can't grow the economy by paying wages that workers can't live on and then bemoaning weak consumer demand. It’s why I strongly support raising Illinois’ minimum wage to $15 by 2022.”
“Having manufactured in Illinois for 50 years, we know that raising the minimum wage to $15 will help businesses and employees thrive,” said Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks, CEO of Earth Friendly Products, which recently celebrated 50 years of manufacturing in Addison. “Paying a living wage has improved our bottom line. Our voluntary turnover rate is extremely low, our productivity has increased, and our profits continue to grow. And our employees are our greatest brand ambassadors.”
Robert Olson, Owner of Olson & Associates in Springfield, Washington and Lombard said, “Raising the minimum wage is a kind of insurance for both businesses and workers. It will enable workers to make ends meet and it will boost the consumer spending that drives business and strengthens the economy.”
Business for a Fair Minimum Wage is a national network of business owners and executives and business organizations that believe a fair minimum wage makes good business sense. www.businessforafairminimumwage.org