Minimum WageState Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) voted in support of a minimum wage increase led by Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford. The legislation aims to gradually raise the Illinois’ minimum wage to $15 by January 2022.

“Competitive wages attract the right people for some of the state’s most challenging jobs,” said Hunter.  “We live in an environment where unemployment and underemployment are already dire problems. The point of a job is for a person to earn enough money to survive in a decent manner.”

Senate Bill 81 would increase the minimum wage to:

•    $9 per hour from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018
•    $10 per hour from January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2019
•    $11.25 from January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020
•    $13 per hour from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021
•    $15 per hour on and after January 1, 2022

Illinois’ current minimum wage is $8.25 per hour. Although the minimum wage has become the primary source of income for some families, even people living above the poverty line are still facing tough economic times.
 

“Making Illinois’ minimum wage a living wage will help lift families out of poverty, and it will decrease reliance on state and federal aid, Hunter said. “Some like to pretend that most people working minimum wage jobs are teenagers just starting out on their careers and that’s simply not true.”

The legislation passed both houses and will now head to the governor for consideration.

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