Supervisor David Bowen will propose a new “Living Wage” ordinance to the Milwaukee County Board that will provide better incomes to Milwaukee County contract employees who currently make poverty wages.
The proposal requires all companies who have service contracts with Milwaukee County to pay their full-time employees above the poverty income level for a family of four as defined by the U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services. “With the system currently in place many full-time workers qualify for and rely on food stamps or other forms of public assistance,” Supervisor Bowen said. No one who works a full-time job should be in poverty. We’re talking
about hard-working people in Milwaukee County who are trying to support themselves and their families. Public money should benefit the public.
“We must not sit idly by while human suffering runs rampant in our community. Milwaukee County has an obligation to spend its money with companies that invest in their community by investing in their workers.”
The ordinance would require:
· All contractors and subcontractors involved in County-funded projects to pay employees the living wage
· All County Department heads to include living wage requirements in the bidding process
· The living wage be included in any amendments to existing service contracts if the ordinance is enacted
More than 140 cities and counties in the United States have a Living Wage Ordinance in place, including the City of Milwaukee, the City of Madison and Dane County.