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  THE LOW INCOME & URBAN HOUSING BLOG  

Monday, February 17, 2014

President Obama Raises Federal Minimum Wage to $10.10; Black Leaders Urge States To Do The Same

Obama Raises Federal Minimum Wage

It was in July of 2009 that the federal minimum wage increased from $6.55 to $7.25 an hour. That was almost five years ago. Just this past February 12th, President Obama raised the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $10.10 an hour. The new wage will become effective on January 1, 2015. The President at the same time urged all states to also increase their minimum wages for all employees.

But so far only 20 states have raised their minimum wage rate

The executive order signed by President Obama affects federal employees. Federal minimum wage guidelines are outlined in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). So, while the President's action is good news for federal employees, states also have minimum wage laws. Less than half (20) have raised their minimum wages above the current $7.25 an hour.

State action urged

In Maryland, Black business owners, political leaders and others including former NAACP national president, Attorney General Doug Gansler, and Sheila Brooks, President of the President’s Roundtable, recently met with the House Economic Matters Committee in an effort to raise Maryland's minimum wage to meet the federal wage increase of $10.10 an hour. As Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown explained, “No one should be working full-time, trying to support a family and build a better life, while still living in poverty.”

President Obama Agrees

President Obama agrees that states should raise their minimum wages, and is urging Americans in every state to contact their senators and state representatives to encourage them to do so. He summed it up, "It's the right thing to do!"
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