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Minimum wage increase to affect Chicago jobs

Posted on July 3, 2018

An increase the minimum wage will affect Chicago jobs very soon.

Chicago’s minimum wage will increase to $12 per hour starting July 1, 2018 – a 45 percent increase in the minimum wage since 2011. The increase is part of Mayor Emanuel’s 2014 ordinance that will raise the minimum wage for 410,000 workers annually to $13 per hour in 2019.

“Next week, Chicago will get a raise,” said Mayor Emanuel. “No parents who work full time in the City of Chicago should ever have to raise their children in poverty. Higher wages are good for families, communities and our economy.”

Since 2014, during the same time that the minimum wage has increased, the unemployment rate has been cut in half – proving that working families and innovative businesses can thrive in the same economy. Today, Chicago has achieved its lowest unemployment rate on record, since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics started releasing monthly rates in 1990, and 81,000 fewer Chicago residents live in poverty. Thanks to increases to the city’s minimum wage, by 2019, $860 million will be injected into the local economy. Last year, of the ten biggest cities in America, Chicago had the largest percentage drop in unemployment.

“I applaud the Mayor and City Council for recognizing the importance of higher wages and the role that it plays for families, especially those from single parent households,” said Emilia DiMenco, President and CEO of Women’s Business Development Center. “The increase in minimum wage proves that working families and businesses both can thrive in today’s economy.”

In December 2014, City Council passed Mayor Emanuel’s ordinance to raise the Chicago minimum wage from $10.50 per hour to $13 per hour by 2019. The minimum wage is currently $11 dollars an hour, will increase to $12 an hour plus $6.25 for tipped employees on July 1, 2018, and will reach a minimum wage of $13 an hour on July 1, 2019. Beginning July 1, 2020, the yearly increase in Chicago’s minimum wage will be tied to the rate of inflation but not to exceed 2.5 percent.

“Chicago’s minimum wage ordinance not only provides Chicago employees with the compensation they need and deserve, but strengthens our economy,” said Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) Commissioner Rosa Escareno. “Working together with businesses, residents, local aldermen and other community stakeholders, Chicago is leading the way in creating an environment where a working family can put a roof over their head and groceries on the table without having to work multiple jobs.”