Dozens of clergy gathered at the Capitol for a ‘Moral Monday’ press conference and vigil, calling on the state legislature to pass an increase in the minimum wage to $15 statewide as part of the New York State budget, which is due April 1. They also delivered a petition to legislative leaders signed by 125 faith leaders from across New York.
November 10th was a powerful day of action, with striking workers leading the way to demand living wages and dignity at work. Strikes occurred in 270, with solidarity rallies in 500 cities globally. Here's a sampling of yesterday's media coverage from across New York, and photos from actions in Albany:
On November 29, 2012, the Fight for 15 began in New York City when fast food workers walked off the job calling for a $15 wage and a union. Since then, the Fight for 15 movement has grown exponentially and has changed the public consciousness and political climate regarding the minimum wage and the treatment of low-wage workers in our economy. Here in New York State, the momentum for $15 has never been greater. Workers are now organizing in Rochester, Buffalo and Albany, in addition to New York City. Just a few weeks after the last day of strikes in April, Gov. Cuomo announced that he would convene a Wage Board to consider raising the wage for fast food workers. After four groundbreaking public hearings, at which workers shared over 20 hours or testimony, the Wage Board decided to gradually raise wages to $15 in New York. Then in September, Governor Cuomo announced a push for $15 for all workers.
People of faith across New York are part of a growing movement to combat poverty and inequality by raising wages and protecting the rights of our lowest paid workers. A few months ago, fast food workers won a huge victory with the Wage Board decision to gradually raise wages to $15 in New York. But the struggle is not over. On November 10th, fast food workers will be joined by other low-wage workers all over the state to continue to call for living wages and a union. As people of faith, we are called to stand in solidarity with the poor, and make the moral case that all workers deserve wages that can provide a decent living. Will you stand with low-wage workers in your community on Nov. 10? Take the pledge below today, and we'll keep you updated on how to take action in person or online on the big day.
The NYS Wage Board has issued its recommendations on the tipped wage, including a raise to 7.50 an hour on December 31st. Although it's not the full minimum wage that we had hoped for, it would be an unprecedented increase. So the business lobby is pushing back hard. We need to show our support to ensure that 1/4 million workers get the raise they desperately need!