November 7, 2014
By Neal Tepel
San Franscico, California – More than 190,000 workers in San Francisco and Oakland are winners as Bay Area voters overwhelming approved raises for workers. The passage of two voter proposition initiatives have given momentum to raise the minimum wage for workers in San Francisco and Oakland.
The Bay Area initiatives will benefit 190,000 employees, and add nearly $500 million in consumer spending power to the local economy. Propersition J raises San Francisco's Minimum Wage to $15 in 2018, and Measure FF raises Oakland's Minimum Wage to $12.25 in 2015, each indexed to inflations.
"Raising the Minimum Wage is just one step in fighting economic inequality, but it is an amazing step," said Gary Jimenez, SEIU 1021 East Bay Vice President. "Times are difficult for so many families, wages are flat or falling, and it feels like many of us haven't recovered from the Great Recession. Raising the Minimum Wage gives people hope that things can become better and they can live with dignity."
A total of nearly one million California workers are in line to win wage increases, including the 190,000 in the Bay Area.
"We need a broader economic rights movement. That means fast food workers win a union and decent conditions. It means raising the minimum wage, strengthening public services, and making big businesses pay their fair share," added Roxanne Sanchez, President of SEIU 1021.