Activists Have Gathered Enough Signatures to Put $18 Wage on California Ballot

California voters will likely soon get a chance to vote on raising the state’s minimum wage to $18 an hour, as proponents of the proposal have gathered enough signatures for the measure to appear on the ballot this November.

The Living Wage Act was adopted on Thursday announced that the group has begun submitting the signatures it’s gathered in support of the initiative to the California Secretary of State. The initiative has attracted over 1 million signatures. the roughly 620,000To appear on the ballot, you must have signed at least 100 signatures. According to the Living Wage Act group, labor unions and advocates played a significant role in obtaining signatures.

The state minimum wage is currently at 5% for employers with 26 employees or moreEmployers with 25 or fewer employees earn $15 an hour and $15 an hour respectively. The state plans to increase the minimum wage for all employers from $15.50 to $15.50 in January 2023.

If approved by voters, the ballot initiative would continue to increase the minimum wage incrementally until it reaches $18 per hour in 2026.

California has one of the highestThe state minimum wage is the highest in the country, surpassing only Massachusetts, Washington, and Washington, D.C. Advocates say $15 an hour is too low to sustain a family in the state.

“California voters have been clear: people working full time should be able to afford life’s basic needs,” said Joe Sanberg, an investor and anti-poverty advocate who is sponsoring the initiative, in a statement. “Californians simply cannot afford to support a family on the current minimum wage — which amounts to just $31,200 a year for someone working full-time. Raising the minimum wage in the Golden State is a moral imperative.”

When the Initiative started in DecemberCalifornia’s living wage was $18.66 per hour for an adult working alone. With inflation on the rise, $18 an hour may not be enough to support workers in the state. According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s living wage calculator, a living wage for an adult with no children in California is now estimated to be $21.82 an hour. This number increases if the worker is married.

A $18 minimum wage is still a lofty goal. Legislators in HawaiiThe state of New York passed a $18 minimum-wage measure. However, only a few other states have a minimum wage higher than $15. Further, 15 states don’t even have a state minimum wage higher than $7.25 an hour, which has been the federal minimum wage since 2009.

However, polls show that some states are keen to have a higher minimum income. According to polling from Tulchin Research, 76 percent of Californians likely to vote in November’s general election say that they support raising the minimum wage. Another polling result by Data for ProgressThe majority of New Yorkers support raising the minimum wage to $20 an hour. A third of respondents said that they believe it should be at least $25.

California’s initiative could signal that voters are interested in the issue if it passes. Are you ready to change the goalposts?On the initiative for a $15 federally minimum wage. For over a decade, workers have been fighting the Fight for $15; inflationWhat was $15 back then would be worth $11.94 today. Economists say that a $15 federal minimum wage would still be a huge boon to many hourly workers — but, if the minimum wage had risen with productivity, it It would be. $31.67 an hour today.