Jobs, Wages & Income

The Importance of a $15 Wage Floor for New York’s Nonprofits

August 17, 2015. In an op-ed in City & State by James Parrott, FPI’s deputy director and chief economist, and Jennifer Jones-Austin, CEO and executive director of the Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, they describe why 250,000 workers in New York’s nonprofit sector providing essential human services under government contracts deserve a wage boost.

The Fast Food Wage Board reached the right conclusion. Now, it’s up to Cuomo and the Legislature to affirm the positive value of a… (read more)

Letter to Wage Board on $15 Minimum Wage for Fast-Food Workers

June 26, 2015. James Parrott, deputy director and chief economist, authored this letter to the Fast Food Wage Board to support testimony he previously presented to the Board.

Testimony: The Establishment of a New York City Retirement Security Board

June 23, 2015. James Parrott testified at a New York City Council Committee on Civil Service and Labor on the establishment of a New York City Retirement Security Board. The case for a retirement security fund and program for private-sector workers can be summed up as follows: New York City’s population is aging, many private sector workers do not have employer-provided retirement coverage, and our tax system rewards those who have employer-provided retirement coverage but does relatively little to… (read more)

Comments Provided to the New York Fast Food Wage Board

June 1, 2015. FPI played an important role in the efforts to convince the New York Fast Food Wage Board in June and July 2015 to recommend a $15 wage floor for 136,000 workers in large fast-food chains. FPI materials include the following:

Testimony at the Buffalo hearing of the Fast Food Wage Board, June 5, 2015

Supplemental comments to the Fast Food Wage Board, June 26, 2015

Op-ed, “Boosting the Wages of Fast-Food(read more)

Testimony on Increasing the Minimum Wage in the Fast-Food Industry

June 5, 2015. James Parrott presented testimony to the New York State Department of Labor Wage Board hearing on increasing the minimum wage in the fast-food industry.

Fast-food is a highly profitable and fast-growing industry. Fast-food employment has risen across New York, adding significantly to the growing problem of low-wages that are far from adequate in allowing a worker to meet basic family budget needs. A significant portion of fast-food workers are trying to raise families, but more than… (read more)

Statement on Mayor’s Budget Commitment to Increase Wages for Low-wage Nonprofit Social Sector Workers

May 8, 2015.

Contact: James Parrott, Deputy Director, Fiscal Policy Institute, 212-721-5624

“The Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies (FPWA) and the Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI) applaud the Mayor for including in his Executive Budget a first-ever $11.50 per hour wage floor for the City’s contracted social service workforce. FPWA and FPI have been advocating for this important commitment over the past year. This will mean a big earnings boost for 10,000 workers whose wages currently average less than $10.00 per… (read more)

Real Living Wage NYC Educational Breakfast Forum

April 23, 2015, Manhattan. James Parrott delivered this presentation at the Community Church of New York for the Real Living Wage NYC Educational Forum, a gathering of New York City faith leaders committed to a “faith-based movement for racial and economic justice.

Parrott uses the 2014 NYC Self-Sufficiency Standard as a basis for identifying a “real living wage” level for New York City.

New York City’s Recovery Finally Starts Generating Wage Gains

April 13, 2015. In this report, FPI’s analysis shows that New York City’s recovery is finally starting to generate wage gains.

After years of wage and family income declines since the 2008-09 recession, several signs are emerging of real wage growth in New York City. The three major current government economic data sets all point to fairly widespread and firmly-established wage growth beginning in 2014.

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) average private hourly earnings data show

(read more)

Budget Savings from a Minimum Wage Increase

March 27, 2015. As negotiations over New York State’s budget draw to a close, Governor Cuomo and the legislature are trying to hammer out an agreement to raise the state’s minimum wage, which is currently just $8.75 and is currently scheduled to top out at $9.00 at the end of this year. Both Governor Cuomo and the Assembly have proposed measures to raise New York State’s minimum wage, including a higher minimum wage level for New York City in the… (read more)

Living Wage and Minimum Wage Efforts

July 30,  2015. Given the long-standing gap between the growth in wages and productivity that has eroded living standards for most workers and their families in New York and around the country, raising the wage floor has become an economic policy imperative. FPI has been at the forefront in efforts in New York State and New York City to raise wages for low-wage workers.

FPI played an important role in efforts to convince the New York Fast Food Wage Board… (read more)