Despite rebuffs from a few (out-of-touch) Republicans who think only teenagers and young people make the minimum wage of $7.25 hour, the Administration signed into law an Executive Order setting the minimum wage for contractors to $10.10 an hour. (The Order includes a raise in pay for restaurant workers to $4.90 per hour).
|President Obama wants to 'give Americans a raise";|
signs law raising minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.
The sentiment was echoed by Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez, who said the move was the "smart", "right", and "efficient" thing to do.
“If you’re serving food or doing laundry on a military base, if you’re a nursing assistant caring for our nation’s veterans, if you’re staffing the parking lot at a federal courthouse or if you’re working concessions at our national parks, then you deserve a raise,” he said.
Still, some say that while the new legislation includes a raise for new federal contracts, it excludes existing contractors, who won't see this raise happen.
While the legislation is a move in the right direction, some are concerned that the $10.10 per hour, may not be enough to lift working families out of poverty.
"That is what the president can do with his Executive Powers", said Amy Traub, senior policy analyst for Demos, "but, it's really up to Congress to raise the minimum wage for Americans."
The president is taking this action, outlined in his State of the Union address that also coincides with him calling 2014 "a year of action".
The increase for federal contractors is scheduled to take affect on January 1, 2015.