My name is Karen. It used to be that working hard meant good food and housing, health insurance, with a little aside to send your kids to college and retire someday.
But working minimum wage as a waitress for fifteen years, the only raise I ever get is when the minimum wage goes up.
Raising our kids, my husband and I worked opposite shifts to avoid paying for childcare. Now, we don’t have health insurance or retirement savings.
Our state needs jobs that pay at least $15 per hour so that Minnesotans can live in dignity and working families aren’t just a minor accident away from going over the edge.
Every dollar counts when you’re making so little. To meet basic needs, families like mine need two forty-hour-a-week jobs that pay at least $15 per hour, where your wage rises with the economy. With a living wage, we could finally afford healthcare and save for a rainy day, too. Most of all, it would give our family some dignity and peace of mind.
Are we going to let low pay, cut hours, and scarce benefits rob all of us of economic security? Or are we going to make sure that hard work means families can thrive in Minnesota?
It’s time for Minnesota lawmakers to increase the minimum wage to a level that all Minnesota families can support themselves and their children. That’s why I’m standing with other workers and TakeAction Minnesota to demand change.