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 in June and July 2015 to recommend a $15 wage floor for 136,000 workers in large fast-food chains. FPI testimony, supplemental comments, op-ed, and related data are available here.

Together with the Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies, FPI spearheaded a successful campaign to establish an $11.50 wage floor for 80,000 nonprofit sector workers providing social services under contract to the City of New York, and to have this wage floor funded in the FY 2016 City budget. The FPWA-FPI campaign also secured a commitment from the City to fund the development of a sector-wide education and training system to provide career advancement opportunities and supports for nonprofit social service workers. More information on the Social Services Career Ladder Project are available here.

In a legislative hearing on January 7, 2016, FPI’s James Parrott testified at a New York State Senate Standing Committee on Labor hearing. In his conclusion, Parrott asserts that it would be sound public policy for New York State to phase in a $15 an hour minimum wage.

In its annual New York State budget briefing book for FY 2017, a chapter is included on increasing the state’s minimum wage to $15.