The New York State bill that will become law this week is a sham. It will enrich employers and corporations to the detriment of all working people. New Yorkers deserve a real wage raise, one that improves conditions for all workers.
· The bill is too little, too late: The $9 minimum wage raise over 3 years is not enough for anyone to survive on. New York’s minimum wage would be over $10.70 if it had kept up with the cost of living since 1970.
· The bill is discriminatory against tipped workers: This bill does not include a provision to raise tipped minimum wages. It directs that decision to the Wage Board. This excludes the hundreds of thousands of tipped workers who are predominately women and people of color. Separate is never equal.
· The bill subsidizes Corporations to hire young workers, encouraging them to replace those who are currently employed. Businesses will receive a refundable tax credit for hiring youth of 16-19. This encourages businesses to lower the wages of especially older workers or replace them with teenagers. It is projected to cost the public hundreds of millions of dollars every year.
· Furthermore, the bill does not hold corporations such as Dominos Pizza, McDonalds, etc. accountable and does not put resources into enforcing the labor law. Many workers receive less than minimum wage, but when they come forward, it often takes years for the Labor Department to prosecute the cases. This lack of enforcement encourages employers and corporations to violate the labor law.
This bill is harmful to all working people. We will hold Gov. Cuomo accountable.
1. The minimum wage should be increased to be at least $11/hr, indexed to inflation.
2. Tipped workers should not be treated as second-class citizen. Tipped workers should receive a minimum-wage increase along with all other workers.
3. Put resources into enforcement and strengthen the labor law, instead of giving millions to corporations in subsidies to hire youth to replace workers currently employed.