Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

January-11-07

House Passes Minimum Wage Increase, Senate Expected to Vote Soon

Under the new leadership of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the 110th Congress voted yesterday to raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15-an-hour to $7.25-an-hour by 2009. All House Democrats and 82 Republicans supported the legislation, which passed 315 to 116. Congresswoman Hilda L. Solis (D-CA) issued a statement on the new legislation, known as the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007, emphasizing the importance of the bill for women and working mothers. "Today, women and minority workers are overrepresented among minimum wage workers. Too many women struggle to make ends meet throughout their working life and retirement," Solis said. "The Fair Minimum Wage Act will give 1.4 million working mothers a pay raise."

Congresswoman Solis also noted the inclusion of workers in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) in the legislation. A territory of the United States that has been exempt from US labor and immigration laws, CNMI has a garment industry that is highly dependent on the cheap labor of immigrant women. The Fair Minimum Wage Act will raise the CNMI minimum wage from $3.05-an-hour to the US federal minimum wage by $0.50 increments every six months. Ms. magazine brought the plight of low-wage women workers in CNMI to the attention of readers across the nation in an investigative report, "Paradise Lost."

The Senate must now vote on the legislation, and, if it is approved, it must be signed by President Bush.

Raising the minimum wage was one of Speaker Pelosi's objectives for the first 100 hours of Congress. The current federal minimum wage of $5.15 has not been raised since September 1, 1997, despite the fact that Congress has voted for its own raise seven times in the past nine years. This is the longest stagnant wage since the minimum wage was established in 1938, and, according to the Associated Press, "inflation has eroded the minimum wage’s buying power to the lowest level in about 50 years."

LEARN MORE Read "Paradise Lost," an exclusive Ms. investigative report on the conditions of and politics around sweatshops in the Northern Mariana Islands

LEARN MORE
Get a sneak peek of the Winter 2007 issue of Ms., which features an exclusive interview cover story on Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Look for this issue of Ms. on newsstands January 16!

JOIN Join the Ms. community and receive the premier feminist publication delivered to your door

Media Resources: HR 2; Hilda Solis statement 1/10/07; Steny Hoyer statement 1/10/07; NOW release 1/10/07; New York Times 1/10/07; AP 1/11/07


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

4/17/2014 Federal Court Permanently Blocks North Dakota's Extreme 6-Week Abortion Ban - A federal district court permanently blocked one of the most restrictive abortion bans in the nation yesterday, calling it "invalid and unconstitutional." The North Dakota law, HB 1456, directly challenged Roe v. . . .
 
4/17/2014 Supreme Court of India Recognizes Transgender Rights - India's Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that official documents must allow transgender people to identify as a third gender and directed the federal and state governments to include transgender people, known as hijras, in welfare programs such as education, health care, and job programs. "All documents will now have a third category marked 'transgender,'" said Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, a transgender activist who petitioned the court. . . .
 
4/16/2014 Female Afghan Parliamentarian Injured in Shooting Attack - Maryam Koofi, a member of Afghanistan's Parliament, was wounded in a shooting yesterday. . . .