Sept. 29, 2017
For Immediate Release
Contact: Mike Gillis 216.334.9068
Economic benefits of increase are clear, and more significant increases needed
COLUMBUS, OH — On January 1, 2018, working people covered under Ohio’s minimum wage law will see a 15 cent increase in their hourly wage taking them to $8.30 an hour. In 2006, on behalf of Ohio’s lowest wage earners, the Ohio AFL-CIO and the coalition Ohioans for a Fair Minimum Wage successfully placed the constitutional amendment on the ballot which tied Ohio’s minimum wage rate to the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The CPI increased 1.9% from September 1, 2016 through August 31, 2017, according to the Ohio Department of Commerce.
“Any increase in wages is always a step in the right direction,” said Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga. “However, much more is needed to address rampant wage inequality that has spread in our economy,” he said.
“There is a direct economic benefit to any increase as wage earners will spend directly into our communities and local economies,” he said. “Still, even as with this minimum wage increase, too many working people are not paid enough to make ends meet—and that is what we ultimately need to remedy,” said Burga.
Originally passed as part of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, the purpose of the minimum wage was to prevent market forces from driving down the wages of the lowest earners in the labor force. Research shows that an increase in the minimum wage also spurs employers to increase wages for other low-wage workers.