Purpose

Join Senator Kennedy at Rally Planned for Friday, Jan. 11 at 10 a.m. at the Gloria J. Parks Community Center. 

Kennedy: Raising the Minimum Wage will Lift Families from Poverty and Boost the Local Economy 

BUFFALO, N.Y. – With income inequality expanding and too many families struggling with low and stagnant wages, Senator Tim Kennedy, D-Buffalo, has been working to build public support behind efforts to raise the minimum wage. On Friday, Jan. 11 at 10 a.m., Kennedy will gather community activists, faith-based leaders and local residents at a rally at the Gloria J. Parks Community Center to urge Albany to finally take action on legislation to boost the minimum wage. Kennedy calls the minimum wage hike a “critical measure to lift families from poverty and boost the local economy.”        

Kennedy invites the public to join the rally Friday to show support for an increase in the minimum wage. The Gloria J. Parks Community Center is located at 3242 Main Street in Buffalo.

“The current minimum wage just doesn’t cut it for local families. At $7.25 an hour, it’s less than $300 each week and barely $15,000 a year for full-time work. That’s simply not enough to put food on the table and raise a family,” Kennedy said. “Raising the minimum wage will help lift families from poverty, and it will boost the statewide economy, as workers re-circulate their higher incomes into local businesses. A minimum wage hike will also reduce the strain on safety-net programs caused by inadequate wages.”

Kennedy supports proposals that would increase the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.75 an hour. About 1 million workers – which is about 11 percent of the state’s entire workforce – will see a positive benefit in their paychecks when the minimum wage is raised to $8.75. At the current minimum wage, a family of two – one full-time, minimum-wage earner and a dependent – barely earns enough to live above the federal poverty line. Kennedy also supports linking the minimum wage to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which would help maintain the purchasing power of minimum-wage households.

Higher wages will be reinvested directly into the local economy, as minimum-wage earners put their larger pay checks to work buying food, clothing or other necessities for their families. When the minimum wage increases by a dollar, it results in $2,800 in new spending by minimum-wage households over the following year. 

“An increase in the minimum wage will act as an economic stimulus, since more families will have greater purchasing power, spending their higher wages at local small businesses,” Kennedy said.     

For more information on the rally or on legislative proposals to raise the minimum wage, you can contact Senator Kennedy’s office at 716-826-2683 or kennedy@nysenate.gov.

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Senator Timothy M. Kennedy represents the New York State Senate’s 63rd District, which is comprised of the town of Cheektowaga, the city of Lackawanna and most of the city of Buffalo. More information is available at http://kennedy.nysenate.gov.