The Minimum Wage

Alex Robles joins dozens of sign-holding protesters at a rally against low wages for fast-food workers, in front of a McDonald's Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)


Today’s minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is a starvation wage. We need to raise that to a living wage, because anyone who works 40 hours a week shouldn’t live in poverty.

Yesterday I introduced a bill in Congress to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

The simple truth is that working people cannot survive on $7.25 an hour. Yet more than 30 million people work every day for a minimum wage that is totally inadequate to provide for their families.

Some of those folks shared with our campaign what a living wage would mean for them, and I am honored to share some of their stories with you:

“I could afford to go back to work if minimum wage was $15. It costs my family less for me to stay home than to pay childcare and transportation costs to work for $9.50/hr.” – Elizabeth in Ohio

“A $15 minimum wage would mean that my daughter and I could finally stop living paycheck to paycheck.” – Jamie in California

“It would make me happy to know the people serving me in restaurants and working in other businesses I patronize are being paid at a higher level that may help them get ahead.” – Patricia in Indiana

“As a single mother of two, a $15 minimum wage would mean being able to sleep at night instead of spending countless sleepless hours worrying about how I’m going to keep a roof over my childrens’ heads and food on the table…and maybe even be able to keep more than $5 in my savings account.” – Nichole in California

“I could pay my bills, get health insurance, save for a car, and groceries…I can barely afford bills at the moment and once the bills are paid, no money is left over for anything else.” – Hilary in Florida

“Right now I am making $9.50 an hour. Unfortunately, this is the highest paying job I have ever had and it still is not enough to help me become stable. I was forced to move back in with my mother, which is causing her stress as well because she has to still take care of me after she has already raised 8 children. I feel like a burden and that I should be out on my own, but I’m not. I would be so happy and so content if the minimum wage was raised to $15 in all 50 states! It would mean a new beginning to my life as well as a good start to my mother worrying less.” – Abbigail in Wisconsin

“A $15 minimum wage would mean that my daughter and I could finally stop living paycheck to paycheck.” – Jamie in California

“As a small business owner, I believe I would benefit from a larger number of Americans feeling secure in their homes and knowing that they will have enough food for their families. I want to live in a country where we all make enough money to meet not just our basic subsistence needs, but also our need for happiness.” – Lauren in Iowa

“I could stop living paycheck to paycheck!” – Sally in South Carolina

“I currently work two jobs and go to college full time and I can’t afford my own home. I have medical bills that I pay monthly that don’t leave me with enough to get by. If the minimum wage were to be raised to $15 an hour, I would not have to work nights and days just to make ends meet. I have a girlfriend, we would like to start a family, but because of finances, this is out of the question.” – Eric in Oklahoma

“It would make my life a hell of a lot better.” – Sophia in Louisiana

I hope that it is clear how dire it is for millions of people working full time yet living in poverty. We have a moral obligation to help them.

In solidarity,


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Bernie Blog
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