Billboards Call for Higher Minimum Wages, Expose Poverty in LA

  • 01/14/2014
  • Reporters Desk

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles County Federation of Labor AFL-CIO unveiled a billboard publicizing poverty wages in Los Angeles, Jan. 14, near the intersection of Wilshire and Hoover.

Labor activists hope are promoting the campaign in hopes of bringing higher wages to Los Angeles.

“The stunning number of working poor, uncovered by the study, seems more applicable to Calcutta than Los Angeles,” said Maria Elena Durazo, the leader of Los Angeles County Federation of Labor AFL-CIO.

The billboards — several are placed throughout the city — follow an Economic Roundtable study that the federation released, showing low wages in the city. The study shows that about 810,864 Angelinos live with “poverty” wages of less than $15 an hour.

“Some may not like the fact that we are using billboards to release the findings of this study in the way that we are but any discomfort it may cause pales in comparison to the discomfort of raising a family in Los Angeles on $9 an hour,” Durazo said.

“Los Angeles, City Limited, Poverty Wage Pop. 810,864” are among seven signs near downtown Los Angeles, on the west side of the city and near the Los Angeles International Airport.

According to the study, about 46 percent of workers in Los Angeles make less than $15 an hour. Activists believe that $15 an hour minimum wage could be a great stimulus for the region, increasing payrolls by 10 percent and adding about almost 65,000 jobs.

This year, the Los Angeles City Council is expected to consider a minimum wage ordinance.



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