Since the economy collapsed in 2008, everyone from politicians, to activists, to bankers has talked about how to get America back on track. Finally, most are beginning to see that the way to rebuild America’s economy, is to rebuild America’s middle class–not tax cuts for the rich or trickle down policies.
However, although more policymakers are agreeing that its time to focus on the economic challenges of the middle class, we are failing to fix the key problem that is hurting so many working-class Americans. Despite steadily increasing productivity, wages have remained stagnant or have even deflated for the majority of blue and white-collar Americans throughout the past decade. Right now, overall growth is actually benefiting the richest households in the country, and companies that make billions of dollars annually, like Walmart and McDonalds, continue to make their executives unfathomably rich, while the workers who make such businesses flourish, earn starvation wages.
This data was recently presented in the newest report by the Economic Policy Institute.
Growing income inequality in America must be reversed. The economy cannot recover if the rich continue to become richer, and the poor only poorer. That’s why a raise in the minimum wage is essential. In the case of large retailers, whose CEO’s rake in staggering amounts in earnings and bonuses each year, there is no excuse to not pay their employees enough to live on, or to provide basic benefits.
UFCW Local 1546 represents workers in Illinois and Indiana in a diverse range of industries including grocery and drug retailers; meat cutting, processing, and packing; chemical works; nursing home and healthcare facilities, and many others.