WASHINGTON– Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) co-chairs Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) issued the following statement today after a ceremony with workers where President Obama signed an Executive Order to raise the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $10.10 an hour, beginning in January 2015:
“The national demand for a better economy, stronger wages and improved employee treatment is finally being heard. The people who clean federal office buildings, serve food in national museums and provide essential services at federal sites work too hard to be paid an unfair wage, and so do their friends in the private sector. Today’s executive order is the first step in a longer journey, and one we’re proud to take with the working people of this great country.
“From Union Station to the Smithsonian and the Pentagon, federal workers spoke out courageously this year for dignity and fair pay. We’ve reached this point thanks to their actions and their efforts. We applaud President Obama for doing the right thing and putting working people first.
“Over the last year, we’ve heard from thousands of workers who will be helped by the executive action taken today. We joined them in the streets over the summer because Americans who work hard deserve better wages. It has been our honor to stand alongside them in this fight, and we’ll continue to stand with them until every American is paid what he or she earns.
“We should build on this victory. The minimum wage must be raised for all Americans. The government should be a leader in this fight. The federal minimum wage for tipped workers remains unacceptably low at 2.13 an hour, which is why we’re so happy to see that today’s order increases the minimum wage for tipped workers employed by federal contractors.
“The president, the Progressive Caucus, Good Jobs Nation and workers all over the country will keep on fighting for working people. Today’s victory has only increased our belief that we can accomplish great things for hard-working Americans who have waited for fair pay for too long.”