Yesterday, Congressman Tim Bishop filed a discharge position on H.R. 1010—the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013. This rare procedure attempts to force the Speaker of the House to bring the bill to a vote by collecting 218 signatures from members of the House—the number needed to pass a bill. While this procedure is unlikely to succeed, it underscores the urgency being given to this issue by many concerned House members. Read more…
By Nicole Berner
As an attorney and a mother of three sons, I have followed the “mommy wars” only from a distance. The conversation about whether women should stay-at-home or work after having children never spoke to me as a woman married to, and parenting with, another woman. Our first child was born just over 18 years ago while we were both in graduate school. Since then, my wife and I “made the road by walking” as together we navigated parenting and launching our careers. With few role models to look to for guidance in building our two-mom family, we figured it out as we went along.
Yesterday, the Congressional Budget Office released its estimate of the impact of raising the minimum wage to $10.10 by 2016. The report gave the increase a mixed review, stating it would cost half a million jobs, but raise nearly 1 million Americans out of poverty. This report has given opponents of raising the minimum wage damaging fuel, but groups supportive of the increase have been quick to dispute the report’s findings.
Advocates of the increase conclude that the CBO study is less rigorous than the numerous studies over the past decade that find little impact on national employment. The CBO report does not examine many benefits to employers, such as employees’ higher productivity and lower turnover. 600 economists—including 7 noble laureates—signed a letter supporting the increase and stating they believe the increase would cause few job losses (and possibly even an increase in the number of jobs). While those opposed to lifting working Americans out of poverty have been given an outlier report to support their views, it is more important than ever to support working families. Please take a moment and contact your Members of Congress and urge them to support increasing the minimum wage.
February is Jewish Disability Awareness Month and this post is part of a series highlighting different policy initiatives that affect people with disabilities.
Pressure on Congress to increase the minimum wage has been gaining momentum in recent months. The New York Times published a great editorial and infographic on the matter, advocacy has focused on today, 2-13, ($2.13 is the current tipped minimum wage) and President Obama signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contract workers—first announced in his State of the Union. But one detail flew under the radar while the east coast prepped for snow—the executive order he signed covers individuals with disabilities, who often work for a subminimum wage. Read more…
Update: In a victory for economic justice and people with disabilities, the Obama administration disclosed today that the executive order announced in his State of the Union–and signed today–raising the minimum wage for federal contract workers will apply to workers with disabilities who were previously paid a sub-minimum wage. Read more here.
In his State of the Union on Tuesday night, President Obama answered my hope for the address by announcing an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $10.10 an hour. As I said in my blog before his speech, federal contractors are collectively the largest creator of poverty-wage jobs—larger than Walmart and McDonalds combined. This long overdue executive order will give a raise to over two million Americans. Read more…
What is Double Booked?
Double Booked: A Conversation about Working Families in the 21st Century, is the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism’s new blog on working families. The blog was inspired by the announcement of a White House Summit on Working Families this coming Spring.
Double Booked will be a forum for women and men of all ages, careers, backgrounds, and perspectives to share stories, reflections, opinions, and sometimes legislative or policy ideas about being part of a working family in North America today.
When I heard that the White House was planning a Summit on Working Families later this Spring, I felt a surge of excitement. Our country is overdue for a dialogue on how to improve the lives of working families. As we have engaged before with Democrat and Republican White Houses, so here the Reform Jewish Movement has a lot to contribute. Our Movement has long been a moral force and advocate for the rights of working families, from affordable child care, to equal pay for women, to the importance of a living wage.
This is also a topic of great personal passion. One of my proudest life accomplishments has been finding a path (though bumpy at times!) that allows me to invest in both my career and my family. At age 44, and with daughters now 16 and 14 and a son who is 12, I, together with my husband, have lived the “working family” life for many years- the good, the bad, and the ugly.
This is the first post in a series on the RAC’s expectations and hopes for President Obama’s
Economic inequality is expected to be a focal point of the President’s address—within the speech he will touch on a variety of programs critical for economic justice in our nation. If I can guarantee one thing to be mentioned in the State of the Union, it is the Minimum Wage Fairness Act, which has been simmering in the Senate for the last two months. The bill would raise the minimum wage to $10.10 by 2015 and index it to inflation each year after. Additionally, it would raise the tipped minimum wage to at least $7.07 from its current paltry $2.13. President Obama likely wants to make this bill a signature piece of legislation for his second term and will be pushing hard for its enactment. Read more…