Business Owners Welcome White House Support for $10 Minimum Wage

Fri Nov 8, 2013 10:37am EST

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Business Owners Welcome White House Support for $10 Minimum Wage

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, Nov. 8, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Business owners applauded President Obama in backing a federal minimum wage increase to at least $10 an hour. "The American Dream needs a minimum wage increase," said Lew Prince, CEO and co-owner of Vintage Vinyl in St. Louis, the Midwest's largest independent music store. "The current minimum wage is too low for workers to live on and too low to sustain the consumer demand that businesses need to survive and thrive."

"We can't build a strong economy on a minimum wage from 1950, which is equivalent to today's $7.25 minimum wage, after adjusting for inflation," said Holly Sklar, Director of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage. "The minimum wage has lost a third of its buying power since 1968, undermining working families, businesses and our economy."

Business for a Fair Minimum Wage welcomes the President's endorsement of the Fair Minimum Wage Act introduced by Senator Tom Harkin (IA) and Rep. George Miller (CA), which would gradually raise the federal minimum wage in three steps to $10.10 and then provide for annual cost-of-living adjustments.

"This is great news. Raising the minimum wage will help America succeed," said Jon Cooper, the President of Spectronics Corporation in Westbury, NY. "Employers like me need to do our part by paying a decent minimum wage – closer to what our counterparts paid in the 1960s. At my company, the world's leading manufacturer of ultraviolet equipment and fluorescent materials, fair wages are part of our formula for success."

Raising the minimum wage has strong public support across the political spectrum. Eighty percent of Americans, including 62 percent of Republican voters, support raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour in a recent national poll by Hart Research Associates. While the federal rate has been stuck at $7.25 since 2009, a growing number of states – including New Jersey, which passed a ballot measure this week – have raised their rates above that level. California has approved a $10 minimum wage, and Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts and Minnesota are considering proposals for $10 or higher.

David Levine, CEO of the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC), which with its member organizations represents more than 200,000 businesses across the country, said, "We thank the President for his support of increasing the minimum wage. This will strengthen our economy by improving consumer demand and helping us rebuild the middle class, the backbone of American business."

In Research Shows Minimum Wage Increases Do Not Cause Job Loss, Business for a Fair Minimum Wage reviews rigorous and comprehensive studies of the impact of actual minimum wage increases, which show that increasing minimum wage does not negatively impact employment.

* Business owners across the country available for interview in addition to those quoted. *

Business for a Fair Minimum Wage is a national network of business owners and executives who believe a fair minimum wage makes good business sense. www.businessforafairminimumwage.org

Contact: Bob Keener, bob@businessforafairminimumwage.org, 617-610-6766

SOURCE Business for a Fair Minimum Wage

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