RAISING THE MINIMUM WAGE, LIFTING UP CALIFORNIANS
Today, 5.6 million Californians got a much-deserved raise.
This morning, I was honored to join my colleagues, workers, and labor leaders as Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 3, an historic measure to gradually raise the minimum wage from $10 an hour to $15 an hour over the next six years.
As Governor Brown said today: "Economics is about dollars and cents. It is very mechanical and heartless. But justice is about giving people their due....This is about economic justice. It is about people."
As a co-author of this bill, I am glad to see California take this important step forward to help its workers and families. Income inequality is a defining issue of our time. For far too long, wages have stagnated, the cost of living has continued to rise, and families have struggled despite their hard work.
This minimum wage increase will mean a better future for millions of working Californians -- more money into their pockets, but also into our businesses and economy as they spend their paychecks to pay for life's necessities. This measure is a more gradual and flexible approach than potential ballot measures and includes extra time for small businesses to adjust, while also allowing the option to pause the wage increase in the event of an economic downturn.
The minimum wage will rise to $10.50 an hour on January 1, 2017, then to $11 the following year, and a dollar a year after that until it reaches $15 an hour for employees of larger businesses in 2022 and $15 an hour for small businesses in 2023. In the following years, the wage will be adjusted to account for the rising costs of inflation.
There is much more work to do. But I hope you will join me in recognizing what a significant step forward this is for our state and for Californians.
As always, I hope you will stay in touch. You can email me, and follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson
State Senator, 19th Senate District