Why Women Should Care About Raising The Minimum Wage
12:30 pm, August 18th | by Amy Tennery
A new House initiative introduced this summer aims to raise the minimum wage to $9.80 per hour, up from $7.25. This seems eminently reasonable, particularly when you do the math on what kind of yearly pay this would yield for your typical, 40-hour-a-week worker ($20,384).
The Fair Minimum Wage Act also makes sense, when you look at the legislation’s widespread support and consider that it’s the first time in over two decades that tipped workers would see their minimum wage increase. Beyond the basics, however, a new study shows the bill could be especially important to women.
Women make up 54.5 percent of the workers affected by the wage increase, according to a new report from the Economic Policy Institute, first reported by Think Progress. That amounts to more than 15 million female workers who would see a pay hike, which, as the report puts it, makes the minimum wage increase a “women’s issue.” The female majority affected by the this particular wage hike is likely due to its encompassing tipped workers — women make up roughly 70 percent of restaurant workers (i.e. waitresses). Why previous minimum wage hikes have excluded the jobs women tend to have to open to endless speculation.
What the report neglects to mention (but has undoubtedly been proven), is that women like having enough money to eat.