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Mayor Bowser Encourages Residents to Know Their Rights as Minimum Wage Rises to $10.50

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

(Washington, DC) – Today at Good Food Markets on Rhode Island Avenue, NW in Ward 5, Mayor Muriel Bowser, Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity Courtney R. Snowden and area residents came together to discuss the new $10.50 minimum wage now in effect. According to the Urban Institute, this change will benefit 41,000 people who live and work in the District.

Starting today, all employees working at least 50 percent of the time in the District of Columbia, regardless of where they live, have a right to an hourly wage of $10.50.  For tipped workers earning a base rate of $2.77 per hour, employers are required to pay them a final rate equal to at least the current minimum wage, including tips.

“I am committed to fighting for policies that create pathways to the middle class for District residents.  Raising the minimum wage will give tens of thousands of Washingtonians a raise and boost the bottom lines of our local businesses.  It’s good for workers, businesses and our economy,” said Mayor Bowser.  “From Monday’s launch of the Summer Youth Employment Program to today’s increase in the minimum wage, we are focused on expanding economic opportunities for the people who live and work in DC.”

“As a Ward 5 social enterprise and employer, Good Food Markets is proud to join the Mayor and her administration to mark the new minimum wage,” said owner Kris Garin. “Good Foods has always been an advocate of workers’ rights and welcomes measures to ensure all DC employees are protected.”

Mayor Bowser and Deputy Mayor Snowden reaffirmed the administration’s commitment to protecting and enforcing workers’ rights, including newly enacted rules on paid sick leave, pregnancy and childbirth-related accommodations, and criminal records screening. 

Members of local labor advocacy groups, including the Just Pay Coalition, distributed information about the new minimum wage and workers’ rights - in English and Spanish - across the city. Additional information can be found via the DC Department of Employment Services.