Endorsers/Supporters of Measure R

finalyardsign

Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act is ENDORSED by:

 

⇒Humboldt and Del Norte CENTRAL LABOR COUNCIL

⇒Humboldt County DEMOCRATIC CENTRAL COMMITTEE

⇒SEIU Local 1021 (a union of 54,000 workers in Northern California)

⇒ROOSEVELT INSTITUTE at Humboldt State University

⇒Humboldt County GREEN PARTY

⇒UNITED FOOD AND COMMERCIAL WORKERS Local #5

⇒OPERATING ENGINEERS UNION local #3

⇒ CALIFORNIA UNITED HOMECARE WORKERS (CUHW)

⇒EUREKA TEACHERS ASSOCIATION

⇒ PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRATS

⇒ HUMBOLDT UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST Social Action Committee

⇒ COALITION FOR GRASSROOTS PROGRESS

⇒ LINDA ATKINS, Eureka City Councilmember

⇒ CHRIS KERRIGAN, former Eureka City Councilmember

⇒ NATALIE ARROYO, Eureka City Council candidate

⇒ KIM BERGEL, Eureka City Counsel candidate

Fair Wage Cafe Sept. 27- Awesome Community Event!

fair wage cafe SEPT 27_2014

11th FAIR WAGE CAFE

The Cafe is family-friendly, community building, relaxing, and fun event. All free! A large buffet of delicious, nutritious food and sweets with coffee, tea, and juice; fabulous live local music; games for kids (plus a playground and a large grassy area for running around); guest speakers; space for informational tables about your projects or organizations; ways to help raise the minimum wage; and an open setting where you can be social or just eat, listen to the music, read the materials, relax.

WHAT:  Fair Wage Cafe

WHEN:  Saturday, Sept. 27th, 12noon – 5:00pm

WHERE: at Cesar Chavez Park (also know as Hammond or Candy Cane Park) 14 & F Streets, Eureka

WHO:  Open to all, All ages

Link to flier: https://app.box.com/s/1znq9o2rfhayih370dza

We have lots of handbills for the Cafe if you want a stack to pass out.

If you would like to set up a table to share your information with people at the Cafe, please contact us.  (707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org

Great live local music will include Sarah Torres, BeThIsBell, Charlie Sussman, Tommie Willson, and the  Mad River Rounders!!

Guest speakers will include Natalie Arroyo  and Kim Bergel who are running for Eureka City Council and who strongly support the Fair Wage Act, Measure R!

Strong wages help build strong families! Gatherings build strong communities!

We dedicate this Fair Wage Cafe to Bill Holmes, who passed on August 30th.  Bill was one of the Fair Wage Act creators, a talented troubadour and human rights activist, and a good friend to us and to all people struggling with poverty, bad healthcare, trauma, homelessness, or low wages.  It was Bill’s idea to have these wonderful Cafes!

Exciting Updates from the (Measure R) Fair Wage Folks

FIFTY FOUR days until the election on November 4th!

Thank you for reading the whole update below.

OUR CONTACT INFO: info@fairwages.org , (707) 442-7465

Facebook- Fair Wage Folks , Eureka Fair Wage Act (Page)

Website: fairwages.org

Blog: eurekafairwageact.wordpress.com

 

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VIDEO

Check out these two new videos (motion graphics) for Measure R!

Eureka! Raise The Minimum Wage! Vote YES on R
http://youtu.be/eSSmzHtGEpo

Eureka! Raise the Minimum Wage! Volunteer to Help Pass Measure R   http://youtu.be/oe25FY01Lz4

Please watch and spread around. They are identical, except for the endings. Each is less than two minutes long! Please choose one and send it to your Eureka contacts, share on your social media, tweet about them, ‘like’ them on your you tube channel!

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PRIDE

The Fair Wage Folks at Humboldt Pride festival, Sept. 13!

WHAT: Humboldt Pride Rainbow Revolution festival (cocktails and beer, two stages of entertainment, children’s area )

WHEN: Saturday, Sept.13th, 12noon – 5:00pm

WHERE: Halvorsen Park, Eureka

WHO: Open to all, All ages

We will have a table set up about the Eureka Fair Wage Act / Measure R all day at the Pride festival. Dedicated Fair Wage folk, Sarah Torres, with her amazing voice and guitar skills, will perform her original songs on stage with BeTHIsBell. It will be a collaboration not to be missed! Both Sarah and Beth have consistently shared their music at the Fair Wage Cafes, Arts Alive, and many street concerts in support of the Fair Wage Act.

 

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FAIR WAGE CAFE

11th Fair Wage Cafe September 27, 2014

The Cafe is family-friendly, community building, relaxing, and fun event. All free! A large buffet of delicious, nutritious food and sweets with coffee, tea, and juice; fabulous live local music; games for kids (plus a playground and a large grassy area for running around); guest speakers; space for informational tables about your projects or organizations; ways to help raise the minimum wage; and an open setting where you can be social or just eat, listen to the music, read the materials, relax.

WHAT: Fair Wage Cafe

WHEN: Saturday, Sept. 27th, 12noon – 5:00pm,

WHERE: at Cesar Chavez Park (also know as Hammond or Candy Cane Park) 14 & F Streets, Eureka

WHO: Open to all, All ages

fair wage cafe SEPT 27_2014

Link to flier: https://app.box.com/s/1znq9o2rfhayih370dza

We have lots of handbills for the cafe if you want a stack to pass out.

If you would like to set up a table to share your information with people, please contact us.  (707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org

 

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ARE YOU AND YOUR FRIENDS REGISTERED TO VOTE?

Only 54 days until the election on November 4th!

Please make sure you are registered to vote for Measure R in the city limits of Eureka. Check your registration status here:

https://co.humboldt.ca.us/election/voter-status/

If you need to register or know people who do, please call or email us. (707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org  We will bring you a registration form. It only takes a couple of minutes to fill out. We all can win this if we vote for higher wages.

 

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YARD SIGNS for Measure R are available. Please contact us if you want one.  (707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org

We also have laminated window signs for your home, office, or vehicle.
cropped-fair-wages-yard-sign.jpg
***
VOLUNTEER Volunteer any evening to help pass Measure R.
(707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org  Knocking on doors and talking with Eureka residents continues every evening. Please find some time to join us for a couple of hours.  We will do a short preparation and you will go out with an experienced person, so don’t worry if you’ve never done anything like this.Also, if you can help us put information into a spreadsheet, from your own home, that would be super helpful!***
DAILY BANNER ACTION

Stand with the Fair Wage banner! We have a beautiful YES ON R banner that we can display every day to thousands of passers-by on Broadway. Don, one of the drafters of the Fair Wage Act (Measure R) and a proud Fair Wage Folk, needs one person every weekday to accompany him in sitting or standing with the banner at Wabash and Broadway. Please contact us if you would be willing to hold the professionally made banner (donated by Jim Signs) for two hours with Don. Don will provide transportation to and from the spot on Broadway. Guaranteed laughs with Don, too!

photo by Craig Spjut of UA Local 290 Plumbers and Steamfitters

photo by Craig Spjut
of UA Local 290
Plumbers and Steamfitters

(707) 442-7465, info@fairwages.org

 

***

$$HELP

Help get the last money together for PARC rent! PARC has been the main organizing space/office for the Fair Wage Folks. PARC still needs $150 for September rent. Please donate if you can.parc.2truth.com  click on “Give Now”

[This is a separate donation link, etc then The Fair Wage Folks.  PARC does not have a state committee campaign number, just a bunch of grass roots!]

 

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Write a letter to the editor in support of Measure R. It would be good to see one every day in the Times-Standard and North Coast Journal. A letter does not need to be complicated- could simply say why you support Measure R.

Thank You for your help and support!
The Fair Wage Folks

‘SeaTac is proving trickle-down economics wrong’

People rally in support of a $15 minimum wage at Seattle Central Community College in Seattle, Washington March 15, 2014.
People rally in support of a $15 minimum wage at Seattle Central Community College in Seattle, Washington March 15, 2014.  Jason Redmond/Reuters

‘SeaTac is proving trickle-down economics wrong’

09/08/14 11:18 AM
The community of SeaTac, Washington, home to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, this year became the first in the nation to approve a $15 minimum wage law.
It’s been more than eight months since the policy took effect, and Dana Milbank highlighted the results over the weekend.
As fast-food workers demonstrate nationwide for a $15 hourly wage, and congressional Republicans fight off a $10 federal minimum, little SeaTac has something to offer the debate. Its neighbor, Seattle, was the first big city to approve a $15 wage, this spring, but that doesn’t start phasing in until next year. SeaTac did it all at once. And, though there’s nothing definitive, this much is clear: The sky did not fall.
“SeaTac is proving trickle-down economics wrong,” says David Rolf, the Service Employees International Union official who helped lead the $15 effort in SeaTac and Seattle, “because when workers prosper, so do communities and businesses.”
In fairness, SeaTac is a small community and the number of affected workers is quite modest, making this a difficult test case. Still, as Milbank’s piece noted, the owner of a SeaTac hotel, who had strongly opposed the minimum-wage increase during the 2013 debate, said the hike would invariably lead to local layoffs and eliminated jobs.
That was last year. This year, with the $15 minimum wage in effect, the hotel is moving forward with a multi-million dollar expansion anyway.
And what of Seattle, which will soon have easily the highest minimum wage of any major U.S. city?
Milbank’s column added these valuable insights.
In Seattle last week, I stopped in at the jammed Palace Kitchen, flagship of Seattle restaurateur Tom Douglas, who runs upward of 15 establishments. He warned in April that the $15 wage could “be the most serious threat to our ability to compete,” and he predicted that “we would lose maybe a quarter of the restaurants in town.” Yet Douglas has opened, or announced, five new restaurants this year.
Likewise, the International Franchise Association has sued to block implementation of the law, arguing that nobody “in their right mind” would become a franchisee in Seattle. Yet Togo’s sandwiches, a franchise chain, is expanding into Seattle, saying the $15 wage isn’t a deterrent.
And a spokesman for Weyerhaeuser, the venerable wood and paper company, says the $15 wage didn’t factor into its decision, announced last month, to move its headquarters and 800 employees to Seattle from outside Tacoma.
It’s against this backdrop that the political debate continues to unfold. The White House made a minimum-wage increase the subject of its official weekly address over the weekend, and just last week, two Republican opponents of a wage hike – Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate hopeful Rep. Tom Cotton – both started hedging on whether an increase is a good idea.

My Word: We need Measure R Support the Eureka Fair Wage Act

Eureka Times-Standard Guest Opinion, posted online 9/4/14
printed in paper on 9/5/14, page A4

We need Measure R: Support the Eureka Fair Wage Act

By Verbena Lea

“Poverty level wages are not a gamble, they’re a guaranteed loss for the community” — Working Families Party.

Working people are ripped off by misguided public policy which claims that giving more money to the already-wealthy creates jobs. This policy fails us because it is based on a lie. When government fails to meet the community’s needs, the people come together to craft a solution.

The solution to poverty level wages is to raise them. Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act, does just that. Larger employers will pay their workers a minimum of $12 an hour. Smaller businesses, those with 24 or fewer employees, can continue to pay the current state minimum of $9 an hour if they chose.

We have over seven decades of data about what happens when we raise the minimum wage. Employment and economic activity go up. Opportunities increase for everyone. In 2012, for example, San Jose residents raised the minimum wage for all workers $2 more an hour. Throughout the first year, unemployment dropped two points and 9,000 new businesses opened. Surrounding communities, including Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Berkeley, and Richmond, are raising wages to keep pace with the competitive, high-wage oasis that is San Jose.

Eureka needs Measure R.

Some believe that workers should be paid poverty wages for doing jobs of “unskilled labor,” even if their labor and time generate millions for their employers. First, there is no such thing as unskilled labor. Every person brings the skills of life experience, social interaction, and personal education to every task.

“When someone works for less pay than she can live on — when, for example, she goes hungry so that you can eat more cheaply and conveniently — then she has made a great sacrifice for you, she has made you a gift of some part of her abilities, her health, and her life. The ‘working poor,’ as they are approvingly termed, are in fact the major philanthropists of our society. They neglect their own children so that the children of others will be cared for; they live in substandard housing so that other homes will be shiny and perfect; they endure privation so that inflation will be low and stock prices high. To be a member of the working poor is to be an anonymous donor, a nameless benefactor, to everyone else.” — author Barbara Eherenreich.

The minimum wage was designed in 1938 — to alleviate poverty. Today, the minimum wage has lost so much buying power that families working full-time struggle to survive. When low-wage workers are paid more fairly, they will earn enough to live independent lives. They can save for their future and that of their children.

State and federal minimum wage increases are NOT indexed to inflation. Measure R is. If prices go up, wages will keep pace.

Since 1975, people receiving “fixed income” benefits have had yearly cost-of-living increases tied to the Consumer Price Index. Before 1975, they had to wait around until Congress decided it was time for an arbitrary increase. This is still the reality for minimum wage workers in this country. If you’re going to call anything a “fixed income,” let the historical record show that it is the wage of the low-paid worker. We are no longer waiting for legislators to address economic realities. Measure R will result in a fair wage that’s finally indexed to inflation. The cost of living is always rising, and that is not a reason to keep your neighbors living in poverty.

We need Measure R.

Low-wage workers spend their money here at home. Measure R means people can meet their needs and afford leisure activities: go out to dinner and a movie; listen to live local bands with a beverage down at Siren’s Song; take their children to the bouncy house at Bayshore Mall.

More money circulating through the hands of local workers, then passing through local businesses rather than corporate headquarters, is vital to rejuvenate Eureka’s economy.

Measure R is the right thing to do morally. Being paid a fair wage for your labor is what gives dignity to work. Measure R is the right thing to do fiscally. We live in a demand-driven economy; you can’t drive demand on poverty-level wages.

“Someday low-wage workers will rise up and demand to be treated fairly, and when that day comes everyone will be better off.” — Ehrenreich, “Nickel and Dimed.”

We need Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act.  Demand Measure R.

Verbena Lea, one of the drafters of Measure R, resides in Eureka and submitted this “My Word” on behalf of the Fair Wage Folks, a committee of Measure R’s drafters and supporters.

 

“Measure R: An overview of Eureka’s Fair Wage Act” / Times-Standard front page 9-4-14

By Will Houston  whouston@times-standard.com

from Editor’s Note:  This is the first story in a four-part series looking at Eureka’s Fair Wage Act, known as Measure R, which will be on the city’s Nov. 4 General Election ballot. ….

“…There are too many people living in poverty here — working, but can’t afford rent, working and going to school, but not spending money. City government does nothing to change that for the majority of Eurekans. Large profitable employers can afford to pay $12 an hour, a fair wage.”

Read the article here: http://www.times-standard.com/localnews/ci_26465327/measure-r-an-overview-eurekas-fair-wage-act

 

Take the poll on the left too! We voted $15 (Seattle!!)

Updates in the campaign for MEASURE R – THE EUREKA FAIR WAGE ACT

August 22 Updates

Very Important:  We have an immediate need for volunteers to help us CANVASS in Eureka. No experience required! And you don’t have to live in Eureka to help. We have been knocking on doors every day, and we need more people. We will prepare you to canvass for Measure R, provide simple outreach supplies, and pair you up with a person who has experience. Then we’ll hit the streets, talk with Eureka residents about the fight for $12 in Eureka, and register more voters. We’ve registered about 350 Eureka residents so far!

WE NEED YOUR HELP TO RAISE WAGES

  • We need you to VOLUNTEER your time and energy to help with phone calls, data entry, sign delivery, tabling at events, graphic art, etc.- your skills are needed.
  • YARD SIGNS for Measure R are being made by a small, local printing shop. Very exciting! Let us know if you’d like us to bring you a yard sign (or a smaller window sign) to display at your home or business in support of the Fair Wage Act!  Here’s what it looks like.

 

​​

  • We’re hosting another outdoor FAIR WAGE CAFE at Cesar Chavez Park (Hammond Park), at 14th and F, Eureka (with the tennis courts and playground). It will be held sometime in September, on a Saturday.  We’ll finalize the date soon. Enjoy nutritious, yummy food, live local music, kid’s games, and family fun from 12noon to 5pm. Bring friends, co-workers, neighbors, and the whole family out for a day in the park! It’s all free!
  • Measure R recently received the unanimous endorsement of the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee. Our thanks to them for their support of Measure R, and we’re pleased to add them to the growing list of organizations and individuals that stand behind Eureka’s working families.

  Endorsers of Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act, we thank you:

  • Humboldt and Del Norte Central Labor Council
  • Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee
  • Roosevelt Institute at Humboldt State University
  • Humboldt County Green Party
  • SEIU Local 1021- a union of 54,000 workers in Northern California
  • United Food and Commercial Workers Local #5
  • Humboldt Unitarian Universalist Social Action Committee
  • Progressive Democrats
  • Operating Engineers Union local #3
  • Building and Construction Trades Council of Humboldt and Del Norte Counties
  • Eureka City Council member Linda Atkins
  • former Eureka City Council member Chris Kerrigan
  • Natalie Arroyo*
  • Kim Bergel*

(*We hope Natalie Arroyo and Kim Bergel will be Eureka City Council members in the near future)

  • Brave New Films, a non-profit documentary film company, is making a pro-minimum wage raise video that will be ready by Labor Day weekend.  They have contacted us, and we will have the video to show on Access Humboldt, the internet, wherever we (and you) can spread it.  It will include Eureka’s Measure R information!

 

  • Please consider giving a FINANCIAL DONATION of any amount to the Measure R campaign. It is run solely by volunteers in the community. Donations will help us print important campaign materials, fund radio spots, and help pay for web space. Donate today at FAIRWAGES.ORGYou can mail us a contribution, donate online, hand us money, a check, or money order in person– however it works for you!
  • If you haven’t seen our new website, please go to its easy-to-remember address, fairwages.org. Also, we continue to host the blog, eurekafairwageact.wordpress.com where, for almost two years, we’ve been posting research, news, events, etc. about raising wages.
  • We’re on Facebook.  “Friend” us at Fair Wage Folks. “Like” us at Eureka Fair Wage Act and Measure R.

Help us get the vote out for Measure R!

Fair is fair!  We need this!

For the people,
The Fair Wage Folks

Three Reports on Raising Wages- the smart AND right thing to do!

Local Minimum Wage Laws, Impacts on Workers, Families and Business

Report prepared for the Seattle Income Inequality Advisory Committee,
March 2014
Michael Reich- UC Berkeley Professor of Economics and Director, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley
Ken Jacobs- UC Berkeley, Chair, Center for Labor Research and Education, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment
Annette Bernhardt- UC Berkeley Visiting Professor of Sociology and Visiting Researcher, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment

Citywide Minimum Wage Laws, A New Policy Tool for Local Governments

Paul Sonn, Brennan Center:  The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law unites thinkers and advocates in pursuit of a vision of inclusive and effective democracy. Our mission is to develop and implement an innovative, nonpartisan agenda of scholarship, public education, and legal action that promotes equality and human dignity, while safeguarding fundamental freedoms.

Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

David Card and  Alan B. Krueger-  Department of Economics, Princeton University Princeton, NJ;  Published in The American Economic Review, Vol. 84, No. 4. (Sep., 1994), pp. 772-793.

The Fair Wage Folks to Eureka City Council, 6/17/14 [includes research links]

The passage of the Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act, is essential to the future economic vitality of Eureka and this entire region.

Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act, will raise the minimum wage.

Measure R is legally robust, is tailored to the needs of Eureka, and raising wages is a proven way to increase employment, build a strong and healthy economy, and benefit the lives of working people and their families.

Continue reading

Help CANVASS Eureka for Measure R

The Fair Wage Folks will be canvassing Sunday July 27th. Please join us!

 

At 4:00pm, we will meet at the Eureka Labor Temple (840 E Street, where 9th and E meet). We will do some rehearsing and preparation (so don’t worry if you have never gone door-to-door), then hit the streets within about an hour. We will canvass no later than 8:15pm.

We are knocking on peoples’ doors to make sure they know about the Eureka Fair Wage Act, Measure R on the November ballot, and that they are registered to vote in Eureka! And will vote!

Call (707) 442-7465 or email info@fairwages.org if you want more info about Sunday (and future) canvassing.

Beginning in August, there will be opportunities and NEED to canvass every day/evening! Please get in contact if you are interested in helping out. We need you! Let’s get out the vote and raise wages! You do not have to be a Eureka resident to help canvass.

 

tiedyeovalsticker

In 6 hours of canvassing, a few of us registered 20 new Eureka City voters! Hundreds of new voters can raise wages and change the political & social landscape of Eureka for the better.

Seeking Space for CAMPAIGN HEADQUARTERS

The Fair Wage Folks need a highly visible office space to use as a Measure R campaign headquarters. We want to rent a place from August through the election in November (about 3 months). A campaign headquarters will allow us a focused space to:

-coordinate CANVASSING of the entire City of Eureka;
-provide a centralized place from which to PHONE BANK;
-be a work space for us to REGISTER VOTERS and get out the vote;
and, perhaps most important,
-be a PUBLIC SPOT where people can drop in and help out, and
-be a visible where people can come in to LEARN AND TALK ABOUT MEASURE R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act.

(After the vote in November, we can plan our victory party from the campaign headquarters!)

IF YOU OR ANYONE YOU KNOW HAS A SPACE AVAILABLE (in Eureka, of course), please contact us at:
(707) 442-7465, through a private Facebook Message (https://www.facebook.com/fairwage.folks), or through email at info@fairwages.org

*We are very grateful to have the use PARC (Peoples’ Action for Rights and Community) and the Eureka Labor Temple for our meetings, canvass training, and Fair Wage Cafes. We drafted the Eureka Fair Wage Act at the Labor Temple! Our desire for a campaign headquarters comes from our need for an equipped office and dedicated organizing space that we can use every day until we win the election on November 4, 2014.

Fair Wage Folks Meet TONIGHT Labor Temple 9th and E Eureka

Our weekly meeting Tues we will be upstairs or in the basement.

Politics at 615.   If you are a volunteer canvasser and want to skip most of the politics come at 7,

 

A BIG THANKS to all who have helped us get this far!

VOLUNTEER CALL OUT! We need canvassers, phone bankers, tablers, and leafleteers, musicians, cooks, bottle washers, clean up specialists, event personnel, drivers, your skill set is needed! Call

707 442 7465 or info@fairwages.org

Donate Button with Credit Cards
 

Fair Wage Cafe in the Park July 12!

Fair Wage Cafe- Awesome Community Event!

WHERE: Cesar Chavez Park (aka Hammond Park), 14th and F Streets, Eureka CA
WHO: Open community event, ALL AGES hosted by The Fair Wage Folks
WHEN: Saturday, July 12, 2014 12noon – 5:00pm

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/events/591555520965801/

fair wage cafe_July 12,2014-1

DETAILS:
Bring family and friends for fabulous live local music all day, coffee, tea, juice, games for kids, lunch, and snacks. All Free!

The cafe is a family-friendly space. Will include music from Sarah Torres, Pocketfulofposies , Mad River Rounders, Jesse Augustine Walker, Rob Brundage, and Lisa Sharry. Also, hear from a local who has been working to unionize at his Eureka workplace, facing opposition from “higher ups.”.

People/Organizations are welcome to set up informational tables. Tables provided.

This is the 10th Fair Wage Cafe!!
Hosted by the folks who wrote Measure R, the Eureka Fair Wage Act, which is on the Nov. 2014 ballot!

Strong wages help build strong families! Gatherings build strong communities! See you Saturday!

Fair Wage Folks Present Local Music For Arts Alive

 

 

We put on Another Full Day of music and education out in front of the Gazebo. Thanks to Jessie and Robert and Turtle and Guitar Dan an Sarah Torres and Electric Bill for providing the Music. All local musicians that give of their talents to help improve the community, thank you. Thank you also to the people that helped table and register voters and just hung out and talked. It was a long weekend but a fun one.

more pix http://radmul.blogspot.com/2014/07/a-fffth-of-fair-wages.html

Chamber of Commerce: Wrong!

shortlink here:  http://wp.me/p2w2NH-zi

The Fair Wage Folks on the Eureka Chamber of Commerce Disingenuous Scare Tactics

May 21, 2014

Eureka, CA:

“And they were wrong!” Those are the words of Professor Scott Meyers-Lipton of San Jose State University when talking about the gloom and doom forecasts by opponents of Measure D, which raised the minimum wage for the City of San Jose. One year since San Jose residents passed Measure D, raising the minimum wage, employment is up, more businesses have been created, existing businesses thrive (including restaurants), and work hours remain the same. Here, the Eureka Chamber of Commerce doom and gloom response to the Eureka Fair Wage Act perpetrates the same old lie- that paying workers fairly kills jobs. The facts prove the Chamber’s statement to be nothing more than fear mongering. The Eureka Chamber of Commerce is just flat out wrong, as it raises the same old tired objections that were erroneously made about San Jose’s successful Measure D.

In California, higher minimum wage initiatives have passed whenever put to a vote of the people. The economies of those higher wage communities have done consistently better then their lower wage neighbors. This trend is also seen throughout the country. It is a shame that the Eureka Chamber failed to do any research. We could have provided the Chamber with the data from cities including San Jose,California and Santa Fe, New Mexico so it could make an informed decision and understand that Eureka will thrive with higher wages.  Many studies showing the positive, indisputable effects of raising the minimum wage are linked on our website, fairwages.org.

The business and labor playing fields are not level now. The Eureka Fair Wage Act will help to make things more level, that’s right, fair. Huge corporations like Walmart and Target use slave labor in China, abusing millions of workers abroad and crushing local competition here in the U.S. Look at all the empty store fronts they have created in Eureka.

The empirical data all show that measures raising the minimum wage boost local business and strengthen local economies. It is a shame that the Eureka Chamber of Commerce, an entity supported by local tax dollars, is shilling for out-of-town corporations and acting against the peoples’ well-being- with no regard for the facts.

Ref:  http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

Ref:  http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_25315215/san-jose-minimum-wage-year-old-success-story

 

Local Minimum Wage Laws – A Summary

shortlink here:  http://wp.me/p2w2NH-yI

mnemonic link here:  http://urlet.com/physical.shot

Report prepared for the Seattle Income Inequality Advisory Committee

http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

March 2014

Michael Reich

UC Berkeley Professor of Economics and Director, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley

Ken Jacobs

UC Berkeley, Chair, Center for Labor Research and Education, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment

Annette Bernhardt

UC Berkeley Visiting Professor of Sociology and Visiting Researcher, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment

Acknowledgments: We thank Miranda Dietz and Jenifer MacGillvary for their contributions to the research and writing of this report.

 

Contents

Executive Summary ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 1

1. Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 4

2. Profile of existing local minimum wage laws ………………………………………………………………………………. 4

3. How San Francisco enforces its minimum wage law ……………………………………………………………………. 7

4. The research literature on minimum wage effects …………………………………………………………………….. 10

5. The effects of minimum wage laws on workers and families ………………………………………………………. 10

6. The effects of minimum wage laws on businesses …………………………………………………………………….. 17

7. Conclusion ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26

References ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 28

Figures

Tables 1

Executive Summary

As cities and counties across the country increasingly debate whether to establish their own minimum wage laws, policymakers are understandably asking a host of questions. How are existing laws designed? What do we know about the impacts of local wage mandates on workers and their families? What does research tell us about the effect of local wage mandates on employment, and, in particular, do businesses move outside city or county borders in response? In this report, we address these and related questions.

Existing local minimum wage laws

Nine localities in the United States currently have enacted minimum wage laws: Albuquerque, NM; Bernalillo County, NM; Montgomery County, MD; Prince George’s County, MD; San Francisco, CA; San Jose, CA; Santa Fe, NM; Santa Fe County, NM; and Washington DC. (Richmond, CA, just voted to raise its minimum wage to $12.30 an hour by 2017, and a final vote is pending to pass the law.)

Current mandated wage levels range from $8.50 in Bernalillo County to $10.74 an hour in San Francisco. (New wage mandates in Washington DC and Santa Fe, Montgomery, and Prince George’s Counties go into effect later this year.)

On average, the existing local minimum wage laws have mandated total wage increases of 41.4 percent, many of them in multiple steps and the majority indexed to inflation thereafter. Localities with larger increases have been more likely to implement them in several steps. Across the localities, the average per-step minimum wage increase is 16.7 percent.

The nine laws are similar in covering the large majority of work that is performed within the boundaries of their cities or counties. San Francisco delayed coverage of nonprofits and small businesses (less than 10 employees) for one year. Santa Fe initially exempted small businesses but later amended its law to cover all establishments.

Two of the nine laws (San Francisco and San Jose) follow their state’s law in treating tipped workers the same as non-tipped workers, maintaining a uniform minimum wage for both groups. The other seven laws follow their states’ laws in maintaining a lower minimum wage for tipped workers (even as some increased the base wage for tipped workers). Several of the laws make similar provisions for commissioned workers.

How San Francisco enforces its minimum wage law

San Francisco uses a variety of high-impact enforcement and education strategies to ensure that the city’s minimum wage law has its intended effect.

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From the beginning of 2004 to mid-2012, San Francisco’s enforcement agency processed 616 worker complaints related to the minimum wage and recovered $5.8 million in back wages on behalf of 3,004 workers. These are higher benchmarks than typically achieved by state and federal enforcement agencies.

San Francisco’s Office of Labor Standards Enforcement assigns 7.5 compliance officers to minimum wage enforcement on behalf of approximately 611,000 people employed in the city. These officers share responsibility for enforcement of the city’s paid sick leave law as well.

Approximately $979,000 supports the 7.5 positions devoted to minimum wage enforcement. In addition, $462,125 is contracted to community organizations that provide education, outreach, and case referrals, largely focused on minimum wage violations.

Effects of minimum wage laws on workers and families

Researchers consistently find that minimum wage laws raise pay for workers at the bottom rungs of the labor market. These increases include both directly affected workers (those earning between the old and the new minimum wage) as well as those indirectly affected (those earning above, but near, the new minimum wage).

Raising the minimum wage also pushes up the wage floor relative to the median wage, thereby reducing pay inequality.

Researchers consistently find that the affected workers are largely adults and disproportionately women and people of color.

New research on the effect of minimum wage increases documents important reductions in family poverty rates and enrollments in public assistance programs, such as food stamps.

Researchers have not estimated the amount of economic stimulus actually created by the new spending power of low-wage workers after minimum wage increases. We do know that low-wage workers and their families are likely to spend a significant portion of those increased earnings.

Effects of minimum wage laws on businesses

Economists have increasingly recognized that raising the minimum wage does not automatically mean that employment will fall. Increased labor costs can be absorbed through a variety of other channels, including savings from reduced worker turnover and improved efficiency, higher prices, and lower profits. Modern economics therefore regards the employment effect of a minimum wage increase as a question that is not decided by theory, but by empirical testing. 3

• Labor economists continue to debate the actual impacts of the minimum wage on employment and hours. We discuss in our assessment the most rigorous studies and offer a non-technical explanation of the nature of the disagreements in the research literature.

• To date, three rigorous studies have examined the employment impacts of San Francisco’s and Santa Fe’s local minimum wage laws. Each finds no statistically significant negative effects on employment or hours (including in low-wage industries such as restaurants).

• A larger body of economic research investigates the effects of state and federal minimum wage increases. These studies compare employment trends for states or counties that have different minimum wages. The best studies make comparisons to nearby states or counties to control for regional economic trends. These studies also find no statistically significant negative effects on employment or hours at an aggregate level or for low-wage industries such as restaurants and retail stores, or for specific groups of workers such as teens. These studies also do not find substitution effects (such as shifts in hiring away from black and Latino teens).

• Studies of the impact of minimum wage increases on restaurants’ operating costs find that an increase of 10 percent in the minimum wage increases operating costs by about 1 to 2 percent.

• Researchers find small one-time price increases in the restaurant industry (of about 0.7 percent following a 10 percent minimum wage increase), but not in other industries.

• Researchers find that increases in the minimum wage reduce employee turnover, translating into a reduction in direct costs (recruitment, selection, and training of new workers) and a reduction in indirect costs (lost sales, lower quality service, and lost productivity as the new workers learn on the job). Some studies have also identified additional benefits of higher wages, including improved morale, improved work performance, and reductions in absenteeism.

• Researchers have not found evidence that employers absorbed minimum wage increases by reducing health benefits or pensions.

In summary, our assessment of the research evidence indicates that minimum wage mandates raise the incomes of low-wage workers and their families, and that the costs to businesses are absorbed largely by reduced turnover costs and by small price increases among restaurants. That said, it is important to emphasize that existing research is necessarily limited to the range of minimum wage increases that have been implemented to date. While these studies are suggestive, they cannot tell us what is likely to happen when minimum wages are increased significantly beyond current local, state, or general.

 

The full report: http://seattletimes.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/opinionnw/files/2014/04/Berkeley-minimum-wage-study.pdf

 

 

 

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