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Quinn Calls For A Minimum Wage Hike

By aaroncynic in News on Sep 3, 2013 3:50PM

Gov. Pat Quinn spent part of the holiday weekend pushing for a higher minimum wage. On Sunday, Quinn visited the Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church where he made another call to raise the minimum wage in Illinois from $8.25 to $10 an hour. According to a press release from Quinn’s office, Illinois minimum wage is less than half of the average hourly wage for U.S. workers. By bumping the minimum wage to $10 an hour, the governor says workers would have an extra $4,800 to spend locally.

“No one in Illinois should work 40 hours a week and live in poverty. There is no better way to honor hard-working men and women across Illinois by raising the minimum wage. As we honor Illinois’ workers this Labor Day, we should also remember the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who said ‘it’s always the right time to do the right thing’.”

Quinn campaigned on raising the wage in 2010 and spoke on it in his February State of the State address. Efforts to raise the wage in Illinois, however, have stalled in the state Legislature and opponents have fought hard against an increase. David Vite, president of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, which opposes an increase, told the Rockford Register Star “we cannot sustain continuing to do things that make businesses in and around Illinois think poorly of the state.”

Quinn, echoed other community organizations who have been calling for a minimum wage increase recently and said better wages mean better communities. “If we want to fight poverty, curb crime and revitalize our neighborhoods, the best way to do it is with jobs.” Increasing the minimum wage will ensure that many Illinois workers get a fair day’s wages for a fair day’s work and can pull themselves from poverty.”