The past several decades have not been kind to Hawaiʻi’s working families...
Costs have skyrocketed while wages remain stagnant. Of the jobs that have returned in the wake of the Great Recession, many now offer lower wages and benefits, leaving Americans without college degrees particularly vulnerable.
Fissures in the country are more apparent than ever, as access to opportunity is radically different between communities: the wealthiest grow richer while working families find themselves increasingly strapped. As a result of perpetual underinvestment in infrastructure, education, and in people, the future for too many of us looks increasingly unequal and uncertain.
That is why it is increasingly important for states to chart their own course toward greater equity of opportunity for its residents. Now, more than ever before, a state-mandated minimum wage must cover the cost of living in the most expensive state in America. A living wage would give Hawaiʻi’s workers the ability to contribute to Hawaiʻi’s economy which, increasingly, cannot rely on toursim dollars from out-of-state visitors. A living wage would rebuild the bridge from working class to middle class that is hallmark of the once great, now defunct, American Dream.
Raise Up Hawaiʻi is committed to making strides towards a truly living wage for Hawaiʻi’s workers. In the most expensive state in the country to live, it is important that everyone earn enough from one job to support themselves and their families. Consumer spending is the engine that powers our economy and when people make more, they spend more; we all benefit. In the most expensive state in the country to live, Raise Up Hawaiʻi believes working one job should allow one to afford a place to call home.