Millions of workers across the country could see a pay raise next year, and half of U.S. states plan to raise their minimum wages in 2024.
The raises will raise the base wage to at least $16 an hour in three states: California, New York and Washington. In 22 states, new minimum wages will go into effect on January 1. However, Nevada and Oregon's new rates will go into effect on July 1, while Florida's will increase on September 30.
On the contrary. Workers in 20 states will remain subject to the federal minimum wage, which hasone hour since 2009, when it was last increased.
Raising the minimum wage could benefit low-wage workers at a time when many continue to struggle with higher costs due to inflation, even as inflation cools rapidly after hitting a 40-year high in 2022. Although minimum wage increases Prices are declining, the cost of food, rent and other goods and services remains higher than before the pandemic.
About 1 in 4 American workers earned less than $15 an hour in 2021, according to the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank. People of color and women are overrepresented among low-wage workers, she added.
Raising the minimum wage is good for both workers and the economy overall, said Holly Sklar, executive director of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage, a group that advocates for higher base wages.
Low-wage workers getting pay raises “increase the consumer spending that businesses depend on,” he said in a statement. “While the federal minimum wage falls further behind the cost of living, at just $7.25 an hour, state increases are vital for workers, businesses and communities.”
Federal minimum wage 2024
The latest increases put more distance between states that are raising their minimum wages and those that continue to rely on the federal base wage of $7.25 an hour.
In fact, workers in six states (California, Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Washington) will be guaranteed a base wage that is more than double the federal minimum wage.
Some cities next year will also raise their minimum wage above the state level. Denver, for example, will increase the city's minimum wage toon Jan. 1, beating Colorado's rate of $14.42 an hour.
The 20 states where the base wage will remain at $7.25 an hour are located primarily in the South and Midwest, from Alabama to Wisconsin.
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