Angelenos could be looking at a $13.25 minimum wage by 2017 if a new campaign by Mayor Eric Garcetti is successful.
Dubbed “the largest anti-poverty program in the city’s history” by Garcetti’s administration, the “Raise The Wage LA” campaign hopes to raise incomes by 21%, an average of $3,200 for an estimated 567,000 workers according to an analysis conducted by researchers from UC Berkeley. The analysis also found that 27% of Angelenos live below the federal poverty line of $23,850 a year in a family of four. The mayor’s new plan would require businesses to raise wages to $10.25 by 2015, $11.75 in 2016 and $13.25 in 2017.
Crtics of Garcetti’s campaign say that Los Angeles would lose workers to neighboring cities and create an “uneven playing field.” The mayor has requested a ripple effect, asking that all neighboring cities partake in this same campaign.
Should Los Angeles support the Mayor’s campaign? Would raising the minimum wage be beneficial to workers and companies alike? Would neighboring cities follow suit with the Mayor’s wishes?
Chris Tilly, Director of the UCLA Institute for Research on Labor and Employment
David Neumark, Professor of Economics and Director, Center for Economics & Public Policy at UC Irvine