Biss calls on governor to pass minimum wage increase

Sen. Daniel Biss

Joining the chorus of workers and Illinoisans who voted overwhelmingly in favor of an increase to the minimum wage, State Senator Daniel Biss called on Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign legislation the Illinois Senate passed that would increase the hourly wage to $15.

“The rich are getting richer, the poor are getting poorer, and the middle class is starting to fade away,” Biss said at a press conference in Chicago this week. “Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour will help that a lot, but it goes beyond that. The state spends $5 billion subsidizing corporations that aren’t willing to pay their workers a living wage. We can’t afford that. Corporations need to pull their weight.”

Biss was joined by Adriana Alvarez, a worker at McDonald’s and a single mother.

“I’m urging Governor Rauner to do the right thing and sign the bill,” Alvarez said. “For me personally, a single mom with a five-year-old, it would mean I would be able to afford everything he needs.”

(Spanish version available HERE)

Biss is the chief co-sponsor of Senate Bill 81. The legislation would incrementally increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour by Jan. 1, 2022, starting with an increase to $9 per hour starting Jan. 1, 2018. It awaits the governor’s signature to become law.