Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Living Wage a win for workers, employers and city



Note free Living Wage Concert on 13 April, 2010

Walter

From: Center on Policy Initiatives <CPI@mail.democracyinaction.org>
Subject: Living Wage a win for workers, employers and city
To: Walter@agentonwheels.com
Date: Friday, March 19, 2010, 10:38 AM

Celebrate 5 years of the Living Wage!

Join us for an anniversary celebration!

Tuesday, April 13
12 noon - 1 p.m.
Civic Center Plaza
Featuring the folk rock of the ZenKeys Cooperative

Click here to sign a "Thank You for Living Wages" letter and RSVP for the celebration

2005 Rally for the Living Wage

March 19, 2010

Living Wage a triple win!

City report shows workers, employers and City benefit from 2005 law

Five years ago, David Parkes worked as a security guard at a San Diego water plant and lived on the brink of medical bankruptcy.  The Living Wage Ordinance was an immediate success for him, bringing health coverage to get his kidney disease under control.

This week, a City of San Diego report confirms that the Living Wage Ordinance has worked well for hundreds of local workers and also for employers and city taxpayers. 

On April 12, 2005, the City Council voted to approve the Living Wage Ordinance, requiring above-poverty pay and benefits for workers performing city services.

The measurable human impact is dramatic:

  • Almost 1,000 local workers for city contractors in services like landscaping, janitorial services, security and maintenance now earn the Living Wage, which is $27,456 a year for a full-time job.  Compared to $16,640 a year on minimum wage, that's enough difference to move a family from below poverty to self-sufficiency.
  • Hundreds of those workers now receive health coverage through their employers, and the rest receive $2 an hour toward buying their own coverage.

The report also documents benefits for businesses and the city:

  • Nearly half of the employers required to pay the Living Wage self-reported that it has improved the quality of their company's services for the city.
  •  Almost half of employers also say it has reduced absenteeism or turnover.

On the historic day of the Council's vote five years ago, more than 600 workers and supporters stood at a rally in Civic Center Plaza in support of the landmark ordinance.  The rally and powerful testimony to the Council culminated years of work by CPI, faith leaders and many community organizations on behalf of the low-wage workers.

The City's own report, presented yesterday, shows that the Living Wage Ordinance, as intended, "advances the interests of the City as a whole by creating jobs that keep workers and their families out of poverty."

Join us on Tuesday, April 13, to celebrate the 5-year anniversary of San Diego's Living Wage!
Especially at this tough economic time, it's important to cheer our City's landmark step to end working poverty.  We will gather at noon on Civic Center Plaza -- on the spot where we rallied for victory five years ago -- for great folk-rock music, anniversary cake, and to thank our City leaders for the Living Wage!


Center on Policy Initiatives |  www.onlineCPI.org
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