So, the Mayor has put together a minimum wage task force. It’s supposed to make a proposal to raise the wage sometime in July. There are no minimum or low wage workers on the task force. Zero. None. Workers are not at the table.
But there are officers of three powerful business organizations, Illinois Restaurant Association, Illinois Retail Merchants Association and Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, who all oppose any hike to the minimum wage on the task force. That’s right. They are opposed to any raise to the minimum wage and they are seated on a minimum wage task force.
What does that mean in real terms. It means that there are three enforcers of poverty and death on the task force. Hyperbole? Not really, when you consider that the poorer you are the shorter your life expectancy and the more dangerous your living conditions are.
What do you call it when somebody more powerful than you gets to make basic life decisions for you? What do you call it when city hall consistently favors the interests of Wall Street over workers and the poor? Dictatorship? Totalitarian?
It is an outrage that none of the low wage workers who risked their livelihood to strike for $15 an hour are on the task force. I mean, was it the politicians or any chamber of commerce or any restaurant association that put raising the minimum wage on the public agenda all across the country? No, it wasn’t.
What would justice mean? The task force would be seated with a majority or entirely of low wage workers. They can best determine a minimum wage that is livable. Poverty enforcers like the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce should not be within a billion miles of this task force. Not if we want to eradicate poverty and get some justice.
I want to help eradicate poverty and destroy the dictatorship of the rich. I’m running for Alderman in the 49th Ward in Chicago. Join my campaign.