People across North Carolina have been fighting for $15 for a long time now. We can’t give up now.
However, that’s exactly what some lawmakers– lawmakers who we elected to represent us– are doing in Washington right now. Giving up.
There is not one state in the country where a worker making the current minimum wage can afford rent. In fact, the average minimum wage worker in the U.S. would need to work almost 97 hours per week to afford a fair market rate two-bedroom and 79 hours per week to afford a one-bedroom. This isn’t just true in the big, expensive cities like Asheville and Charlotte– this is the case across 95% of US Counties, and right here in rural North Carolina from Johnson County to Cherokee.
Right now, we are seeing all the issues that Down Home cares about compound against each other: Workers, often with no health insurance, reporting to jobs during a pandemic but only making wages that set them up to be chronically behind on their rent and other payments. This is no way to live. We need a raise NOW.
Don’t let your senator back down from representing you. Right now, members of the Senate are using obscure rules to remove a minimum wage increase from the COVID relief package. We know that raising the minimum wage is critical in healing our communities from this pandemic – and we need our state’s Senators to do whatever it takes to get North Carolinians the fair wages we need and deserve.