Editor: I have long been an advocate for raising the minimum wage as I believe that it is not acceptable to keep the “working poor” as poor as possible.The Republican held Congress has refused to raise the level from $7.25 per hour, set in 2009, 10 years ago.If the minimum wage had kept up with the Consumer Price Index over the last 50 years, it would now be $10.50/hour.
Because of the lack of action on the federal level, 31 states plus the District of Columbia have raised their minimum wages over the last several years, with the goal of easing the hourly wage up to a point that it can be considered a “living wage.”The 2019, the average hourly minimum in those states is now $9.67/hour, with most of these states on a scheduled annual increase.
Virginia remains at $7.25/hour, despite the efforts of the Democrats in the state.The Republicans have blocked any progress on this in Virginia for years.I have personally met with my local representative for the 33rdDistrict, Dave LaRock, every January for several years, as a member of SEIU, requesting that he vote to raise the minimum wage, and every year, he has said no.He is content with keeping the working poor as poor as possible.
The Republicans have blocked efforts by the governor to address gun violence in our state.They haveblocked efforts to address climate change and environmental issues.
Personally, I am tired.Very tired of things not getting done, of our country not moving forward.It is time to oust those who refuse to discuss, much less vote on, what is best for our state and our country.
It is time to vote for Democrats Mavis Taintor for delegate of the 33 District, John Bell for State Senate for the 13thSenate District, and Wendy Gooditis to continue as Delegate from the 10thDistrict.All of these candidates support raising the minimum wage, reasonable gun control, listening to scientists, funding education, and moving our state forward.
Beth Newberry, Lucketts