San Mateo City Council Holds Minimum Wage Study Session Nov 16,

Press Advisory

City Action Will Address Poverty and Income Inequality 

Contact  Bradley Cleveland, 510 967 1066,

The City of San Mateo will consider a Minimum Wage Ordinance on Monday, November 16th, 7 pm, at City Hall. City Council added consideration of a city ordinance to its list of council priorities at its February 25 meeting, triggering the agenda item.

San Mateo is the first city in San Mateo County to consider a hike in the minimum wage. Voters in San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland adopted local minimum wage ordinances, and city councils have taken the initiative in Mountain View, Palo Alto, Santa Clara and Sunnyvale, and the east bay cities of Berkeley, Emeryville, Richmond, and most recently El Cerrito.

While the economy is growing and the high tech sector is booming in San Mateo County, working families are not sharing in this prosperity. Wages for most workers have stagnated, and rising housing costs have made San Mateo County one of the least affordable counties in the country.

Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour will reduce income inequality and increase financial stability for families who are struggling to make ends meet.

According to the Bay Area Health Inequities Initiative, most low-wage workers are in their 20s and 30s, and over one-third of these workers are parents. Children bear the burden of poverty, which lowers life expectancy, increases rates of infant mortality, obesity, and mental illness. Raising the minimum wage will lift children out of poverty, helping to ensure they are healthy and prepared for school and their futures.

Studies from UC Berkeley’s Institute for Research on Labor and Employment found that an increase in the minimum wage has a multiplier effect that boosts the local economy because working families have more money to spend. UC Berkeley researchers say local businesses offset higher labor costs through a modest increase in prices and through increased productivity from retaining experienced workers.

Members of the Raise the Wage Coalition will be available for interview after the study session.

Press packet:

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