America may be a divided on many things, but the one thing most everyone agrees on is the need to raise the minimum wage. In an effort to rally everyday Americans in support of this effort, community members, activists, politicians and progressive organizations joined the Americans United for Change sponsored Raise the Wage Bus Tour today.
The tour’s first stop was in Cleveland, where low-wage worker Tracy Watkins, along with Cuyahoga County Executive Ed Ftizgerald and United States Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez spoke on the need to improve the lives of working people.
In her speech, Tracy urged members of her community and Congress to raise the wage for working people.
“If you would put yourselves in our shoes, you would vote for $10.10 an hour. We are barely making it without it,” she said.
The tour continued to Columbus, where a crowd of over 50 people gathered to support the cause. Joining the next leg of the tour were Columbus City Councilwoman Michelle Mills, State Representative Mike Foley, State Representative and Candidate for Ohio Treasurer Connie Pillich and champion for working people across Ohio, United States Senator Sherrod Brown.
A bill before Congress calls for raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 from the current $7.25.
State Reps. Mike Foley, D-Cleveland, and Robert Hagan, D-Youngstown, introduced House Bill 502, which calls for the minimum wage to increase to $10.10 per hour from the current rate of $7.95 per hour. Workers who earn tips to supplement their income would see their wages rise from $3.98 to $5.05 per hour under the proposal.