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Minimum Wage Increases Have NYC Workers Earning More in 2020

SavingsThe minimum wage employees must earn per hour working in New York City is one of the highest in the nation. It was raised to $15 per hour for companies employing 11 or more in New York City on December 31, 2018, and reached that same mark for companies employing 10 or fewer this year at the end of 2019. Those working in the surrounding suburbs have seen a rate increase to $13 per hour and elsewhere in New York minimum wage rose to $11.80. The phase in of increases will continue throughout 2020.

The state-wide wage increases are a result of a 2016 law that called for the state to raise its minimum wage to $15 in phases. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office is studying when rates should rise in upstate communities currently dealing with a variety of labor challenges.

The increase in New York is leading the way for states across the country. After Democrats won seats at the state level and in gubernatorial races in the most recent general election, laws were passed to raise the minimum wage. Washington DC’s will increase to $14 in July 2020 and California’s will meet New York’s $15 per hour in 2022. Massachusetts and New Jersey are also scheduled to see increases to $15 by 2023 and 2024, respectively.

New York City’s increase made it the first to reach $15 - currently the highest in the country - but not for long. Seattle’s minimum wage is set to increase to $16.39 soon.

Governor’s Office Sees No Negative Impact from Minimum Wage Increase

Support appears to be strong for the increases. Advocates believe this is because people are tired of working so hard and still not being able to make ends meet. Even if their own jobs were not underpaid, they had friends, family, and neighbors working hard but never being able to save or get ahead financially.

Governor Cuomo is in support of the wage increases across the state and recently released a report showing that the increase had little, if any bearing on labor demands. According to Governor Cuomo, “New York is leading the fight for economic justice, proudly setting a national example by raising the minimum wage to $15.”

Critics of the wage increase believe it will result in employees seeing their hours cut and their jobs lost. The New York City Hospitality Alliance reported service businesses cut hours and eliminated jobs due to the increase. But the governor’s office believes the loss from the wage increases will be absorbed by moderate growth in employment and wages. Critics of the increase also claim it has played a part in the budgetary shortfall of $6 billion. According to the governor, that’s due to the cost of health care aides and other workers.

To see information about the governor’s report and read more about the impact of the minimum wage increase in New York, check out this information.

Ultimately, those who are assessing the fallout from the increase say that despite the loss of hours or jobs for individuals as a result of the increase, data shows nothing conclusive in terms of negative impact. 

Minimum Wage Laws Protect All Workers

These new minimum wage laws apply no matter what industry you work in. They also protect workers who are not US citizens. If you have questions about New York’s minimum wage laws or you believe you are entitled to a certain rate of pay or other benefit and your employer is denying you these things, you have a right to seek legal guidance. Contact Borrelli & Associates, P.L.L.C. to schedule a free consultation.

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