The Fight for $15 is a grassroots movement of low-wage workers that seeks to undo decades of wage stagnation and growing inequality by raising the wage floor to more robust levels. The movement, which began in New York City in 2012 when fast food workers walked out of their jobs to demand $15 and a union, has spread from coast to coast, shaping the national conversation around wages and inequality, and helping push through dozens of state and local minimum wage policies.
Building on the momentum of the Fight for $15 and the goals of the Raise the Wage Act (S.1150) and the Pay Workers a Living Wage Act (S.1832), state and national advocates will call on members of the 115th Congress to increase to federal minimum wage to a more robust level, and to gradually eliminate the sub-minimum wage for tipped workers.
As a result of Congressional gridlock and growing income inequality, a record number of states are taking action to raise their wage floors above the federal. Twenty-nine states, plus the District of Columbia have set their minimum wage above $7.25 per hour, including two which have raised it to $15 (California and New York). And in several other states advocates are actively campaigning to raise the wage floor to more robust levels of at least $12.
Local jurisdictions from coast to coast have been at the forefront of the movement for a higher minimum wage. As a result of gridlock in state legislatures and the U.S. Congress, dozens of cities and counties have taken action since 2012 to raise their minimum wage above the state and federal levels, including 15 that have raised it to $15. Several other localities have active campaigns to raise their wage floors further, complimenting state and federal efforts to improve hourly pay for low-wage workers.
Find out what's currently the minimum wage in states and cities around the nation. Learn about recently approved minimum wage increases and active campaigns to raise the wage floor and eliminate the subminimum wage for tipped workers.
Get answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about minimum wage laws and policies. Start your research here.
No one who works for a living should have to live in or near poverty. Too many lawmakers and policymakers just don't get it. But when confronted with the stories of real people struggling just to make ends meet, they can't hide behind the same old tired excuses. Read the stories of people affected by poverty wages.
Minimum wage laws in the United States date back to the early 20th century. There's a long and rich history around the fight for a livable wage floor—one that carries forward to this day. Get the backstory.
RaiseTheMinimumWage.org is a project of the National Employment Law Project. We proudly partner with national and local advocates to raise the wage floor to improve the lives of low-wage workers and families across America. Learn more about our work.
The National Employment Law Project is headquartered in New York, with offices in Washington DC, California, and Washington State. Get in touch with us.