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Dec 20, 2014

Raising the minimum wage is a women’s issue

by Surina Khan, The Sacramento Bee

Earnie Spencer works full time at a minimum-wage job and takes care of her disabled husband. After paying for bills and food for the month, Spencer, who is 62 and lives in Fairfield, says she has “nothing left over, and am waiting for my paycheck on pins and needles.”

In California and across the country, women are struggling to make ends meet and provide for their families. In fact, two-thirds of all minimum-wage workers in California are women. If they work full time, Californians earning a minimum wage make just $18,000 per year before taxes. That means a hardworking mother of two who earns a minimum wage lives below the official federal poverty line. That is, quite simply, unacceptable.

According to the Insight Center for Community Economic Development, a family of three living in Los Angeles needs at least $65,000 to make ends meet – the equivalent of three minimum-wage jobs. 

Read the Op Ed here.