Don’t spend that potential pay raise just yet. The pandemic has turned a spotlight on challenges hourly employees face, especially at grocery stores, gas stations and other jobs that require in-person contact.
Included in President Biden’s pandemic relief bill was a provision to more than double the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 per hour. But it’s Biden who now appears to lack confidence in the pay raise’s chances in Congress.
Regarding the minimum wage hike, Biden told CBS News “I don’t think it’s going to survive.”
The Senate is split on the proposal which would prevent the necessary 60 votes to make it to the floor. Moderate Democratic senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Krysten Sinema of Arizona, staunchly opposed the hike being included in the pandemic legislation.
Union activist Terrence Wise initiated the push for $15 nearly ten years ago. The 41-year-old national leader of Fight for 15, an organized labor movement, says “To have it this close on the doorstep, they need to get it done.”
During his White House campaign, Biden pledged a pandemic response that would include liberal policy proposals.
It’s been nearly 12 years since the federal minimum wage was increased, the longest stretch without a raise since it was established in 1938.