Apr 14, 2023 | News Story

AG Tish James, NYC CLC, DC37, 1199, 32BJ and More Rally in NYC for a $21.25 Minimum Wage

On Monday, Attorney General Letitia James and more than ten labor unions joined forces to rally for a $21.25 minimum wage in the final state budget. As New Yorkers face the gravest cost of living crisis in 40 years, the NYC Central Labor Council, DC37, 32BJ, 1199, NYSNA, CWA, Laborers Local 79, Steamfitters Local 638, NYS Ironworkers, IUPAT DC 9, and Teamsters Local 804 are urging Albany lawmakers to raise the state's minimum wage to $21.25 by 2026 before indexing it to inflation.

More than 30 labor unions across New York have joined the Raise Up NY coalition to fight for the Raise the Wage Act, which would benefit 2.9 million New Yorkers with an annual raise of $3,300. The legislation is extremely popular among New Yorkers, with recent polling showing that 80% of New Yorkers – including 65% of Republican voters – support raising the minimum wage to $20+ before indexing it. In addition to labor support, the Raise the Wage Act has support from 160 organizations, nearly 300 businesses, and over 80 Albany Democratic lawmakers, ranging from progressives to moderates.

"What labor has done for New York cannot be quantified by a dollar amount. We owe workers a debt of gratitude that can never truly be repaid," said New York Attorney General Letitia James. "Workers are the ones who show up in times of crisis and the ones who keep us moving forward. They are essential, and they should be paid enough to afford the essentials for their families. I am proud to stand with labor leaders and hardworking New Yorkers statewide to demand the raise workers deserve."

"It's past time for NY to break the cycle of infrequent wage increases that fail to keep up with the rising costs of living," said New York City Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO President Vincent Alvarez. "While we're all feeling the pain of rising costs, lower wage workers are being hit the hardest. Most minimum wage workers struggling to make ends meet are adults, and more than a quarter are supporting families. We need to raise the wage to $21.25 and automatically adjust that wage annually—and with 81% of New Yorkers already in support, we can and must get it done this year. Three million working New Yorkers and their families can't afford to wait."

You can watch the full rally here, and read more here as well as in the New York Daily News, News 12, and The Chief Leader.