Wisconsin lawmaker aims to increase state minimum wage to $15 an hour

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MADISON (AP) — A Wisconsin lawmaker says she wants to double the state’s minimum wage, calling the matter a civil rights issue.

At a Tuesday press conference at the Capitol, Rep. Melissa Sargent, a Madison Democrat, introduced a bill that would increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour. The current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

Sargent said the state’s minimum wage is “unlivable” and forces employees to sacrifice health care and other needs to survive.

Supporters held signs that said “fight for 15” and cheered.

The bill faces long odds. Republicans control Assembly and Senate chambers.

Spokeswomen for Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

13 comments

  • NICO

    You know what it is these lazy folks that don’t want to work hard. That are asking for this wage increase and the messed up thing is your order at Mcdonald’s is still going to be wrong. There just mad that Walker wants to drug test anyone who gets state assistance so if the wage goes up they can stay high and not worry about drug test.

  • Rjack

    SEATTLE — It may be one of the first casualties of Seattle’s new minimum wage law. The owner of Z Pizza says she’s being forced to close her doors, because she can’t afford the higher labor costs.

    Devin Jeran was happy to get a raise, when Seattle’s minimum wage went up to $11 an hour at the beginning of the month.

    “I definitely recognize that having more money is important,” he says, “especially in a city as expensive as this one.”

    Unfortunately, he’ll only enjoy that bigger paycheck for a few more months. In August, his boss is shutting down Z Pizza and putting him and his 11 co-workers out of work.

    “Fortunately she keeps us in the loop, she didn’t just tell us last minute.”

    Ritu Shah Burnham doesn’t want to go out of business, but says she can’t afford the city’s mandated wage hikes.

    “I’ve let one person go since April 1, I’ve cut hours since April 1, I’ve taken them myself because I don’t pay myself,” she says. “I’ve also raised my prices a little bit, there’s no other way to do it.”

  • Obamasucks

    Stupid democrat’s people that make minimum wage get better health insurance then someone making twice that.

  • Darian Lee Schlomer

    All of you want to hate on Sargent and whine about your lives and problems. None of you show any respect just a bunch of whiny angry republicans. I will admit that $15.00 a hour minimum wage would be a little excessive but cant you all take a chance and think wow maybe $7.25 the LOWEST federal minimum wage is a little low? With all of the inflation going on and you choose to bash on honest people who could really benefit from a increase in minimum wage? Seriously wake up a little and look at every side not just your own personal agendas

  • NO THANK YOU

    I agree that it should be raised….but not $15….that is way too much. I had worked for 4 years at my previous job until I reached $15/hour…and I was a STORE MANAGER. This to me is also a slap in the face…..I worked very very hard to get where I was…..I feel that a $9 minimum is much more realistic. Also if minimum is doubled…what happens to people who have worked off their a** to get to their $15/hour……does their wage go up as well by a $7 increment? What will happen to the small businesses?

  • get real

    I would hope you got into your job because it was what you loved and felt a calling for, not because of the wages it came with.
    Yours truly,
    Another poor white nurse who received no perks

  • Ricky Smith

    It’ll bring good opportunities for many people. We need this. If people see they can work and get 15hr most likely won’t resort to selling drugs, doing robberies, etc.

  • Someone who knows

    Minimum wage, when started was to be able to raise a family on. It means the very minimum amout that one can servive on. Minimum wage should have gone up everytime inflation set in,but it didn’t. So that is why you have people asking for the 10-15 dollar minimum wage.

  • Peter Lapp

    I don’t see anyone addressing the issue of how does a $15 minimum wage effect the age group under 18?
    Do these nose pickers still in high school get the same wage increase? If so, how does anyone explain the stupid logic of paying someone $15 per hour that has little or NO experience in the workforce for a job that wasn’t meant to be the primary source of household income for a family . How does anyone make sense out of paying someone $15 for an unskilled job. These jobs were meant to be stepping stones to a better job. I could see the minimum wage go to $10 but no higher. $15 an hour min. wage is just NOT logical and would cause many trickle down problems for many businesses.

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