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Yes, The Minimum Wage Is A Women’s Issue

March 19, 2013 / by Off The Sidelines

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women would benefit disproportionately from an increase in the minimum wage, since women make up 64.4% of all American workers aged 16 & up who make minimum wage or lower. The Economic Policy Institute echoes the point with this chart, which shows that despite making up just 49.4% of the workforce, women would comprise 56% of workers impacted by an increase in the minimum wage as proposed by Senator Tom Harkin and George Miller in their Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013.


This bill would increase the federal minimum wage to $10.10/hour and is a top priority for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who is an original co-sponsor of the legislation.

According to EPI, the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 would raise the wages of 30 million U.S. workers, grow our GDP by $32.6 billion and create 140,000 new jobs between 2013-2015. Kirsten feels strongly that raising the minimum wage is crucial to increasing consumer spending, driving economic activity and creating jobs.

But for Kirsten, raising the minimum wage is also about women’s economic empowerment. As Think Progress points out:

A disproportionate number of women in the workforce hold the lowest-paying jobs, a fact that contributes to the gender pay gap. This means that women are far more likely to benefit from a wage increase.
And Kirsten believes that women are the key to making a difference on this issue, whether it’s by electing more women to office to fight to raise the minimum wage or regular women making their voices heard on this issue.
As Kirsten said on Katie:
Did you know the average minimum wage earner is a woman? And 64% are women. We’re not talking about kids out of college, we’re talking about women with children. So there are so many issues that, as we fight for women’s rights and allowing women’s voices to be heard and changing the landscape, whether it’s corporate America or whether it’s setting the agenda of national debate, women’s voices will make the difference.
You can watch the entire clip below:

So please, make your voice heard on this issue. And let us know, how would raising the minimum wage impact you?