In 2018, Arkansas voters passed Issue 5 to raise the minimum wage with 68% support last November. The wage increase has already begun to help tens of thousands of Arkansans who are working parents – health care workers, classroom aides, waitresses and skilled assembly line workers — who put in an honest day’s work and still struggle just to get by. Politicians are now trying to take that away by lowering wages even further, back to just $7.25 an hour. That is only $15,000 per year for a full time worker.
Small business owners across Arkansas supported this gradual, reasonable increase to the minimum wage because it’s a win-win-win for businesses, workers and the economy. It has already begun putting a little more money in the pockets of hard-working families, so they can cover basic needs. That money goes right back into local communities and Arkansas’ economy.
Voters knew exactly what they were voting for when they decided to put more money into the pockets of hardworking Arkansas families. Taking away this much needed wage increase is bad policy and even worse politics. Arkansans for a Fair Wage will make sure every voter in Arkansas knows which politicians stood with voters and which sided with corporate special interests.
Corporations paying poverty level wages cost Arkansas taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Increasing the minimum wage is already beginning to reduce the number of workers needing public assistance. Voters supported raising the minimum wage so families can feed their children without taxpayer subsidies.
Lawmakers should ensure that a fair minimum wage rewards equal work with equal pay. Taking away this much needed wage increase is bad policy and even worse politics. Arkansans for a Fair Wage will make sure every voter in Arkansas knows which politicians stood with voters and which sided with corporate special interests.