By the Numbers: What a $15 an hour minimum wage means in Pennsylvania

Last week, Governor Tom Wolf previewed a key part of his 2019 budget plan; a $12/hour minimum wage starting on July 1, 2019, with a 50 cent increase every year until 2025.  All of Pennsylvania’s neighboring states have raised their minimum wage, while our Commonwealth has neglected to take any action. 


The number of Pennsylvanians that would get a raise if the minimum wage were $15/an hour.  That’s one in three workers across our state.  Pennsylvania has long struggled with raising revenue to support basic services; but by raising wages we lift people out of financial depression and poverty, create stronger communities and alleviate dependence on assistance.


The percent of single parents who would get a raise in Pennsylvania.  240,000 single parents in Pennsylvania, oftentimes the solitary bread winners in their families, would receive a raise.  When parents struggle to make ends meet and are forced to work multiple jobs to support their families, our children and our communities are deprived of a most crucial social foundation: family.


The approximate number of workers living below the poverty line who would get a raise.  That’s 87.3% of Pennsylvanians living in poverty, whose lives would be changed with a living wage.  If we as a Commonwealth want to have better schools, communities and a stronger economy we must build a foundation for Pennsylvanians that sees the dignity in all work. 

As the labor movement we must stand up for all workers and fight for $15 and a UNION.