Peace Scientists work for peace

Minimum Wage

Low wages cost US taxpayers USD152.8 billion each year in public support for working families, report from University of California Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education click here

Consolidated State Minimum Wage Update Table
(Effective Date: 01/01/2016)

Greater than federal MW

Equals federal MW of $7.25

Less than federal MW

No MW Required

AK - $9.75


GA - $5.15


AR - $8.00


WY - $5.15


AZ - $8.05




CA - $10.00




CO - $8.31




CT - $9.60




DC - $10.50




DE - $8.25




FL - $8.05




HI – $8.50




IL - $8.25




MA - $10.00




MD - $8.25




ME - $7.50




MI - $8.50




MN - $9.00




MO - $7.65




MT - $8.05




NE - $9.00




NJ - $8.38




NM - $7.50




NY - $9.00




NV - $8.25




OH - $8.10




OR - $9.25




RI - $9.60




SD - $8.55




VT - $9.60




WA - $9.47




WV - $8.75




29 States + DC

14 States

2 States

5 States


  • The state minimum wage rate requirements are generally controlled by legislative activities within the individual states.
  • Federal minimum wage law supersedes state minimum wage laws where the federal minimum wage is greater than the state minimum wage. In states where the state minimum wage is greater than the federal minimum wage, the state minimum wage prevails.
  • Two states than have a minimum wage lower than the federal minimum wage; 29 states plus the District of Columbia have minimum wage rates set higher than the federal minimum wage; 14 states have a minimum wage requirement the same as the federal minimum wage requirement; 5 states do not have a minimum wage requirement.
  • The District of Columbia has the highest minimum wage at $10.50/hour. The states of Georgia and Wyoming have the lowest required minimum wage ($5.15/hour).
  • Note: 11 states (AZ, CO, FL, MO, MT, NJ, NV, OH, OR, SD, and WA) have minimum wages that are linked to a consumer price index. As a result, the minimum wages in these states are normally increased each year, generally around Jan 1st; Nevada adjusts in the month of July. Effective Jan 1, 2016, 2 of the 11 states increased their respective minimum wages.

Prepared By:

Division of Communications
Wage and Hour Division
U.S. Department of Labor

This document was last revised in January 2016.

Minimum wage myth busters click here

Edited from "The Minimum Wage: How Much Is Too Much?" 

Research suggests that a minimum wage set as high as USD12 an hour will do more good than harm for low-wage workers, but a USD15-an-hour national minimum wage would put us in uncharted waters, and risk undesirable and unintended consequences.

When Congress delays raising the minimum wage, states and cities typically step in and raise their own minimum wages. That is exactly what is happening now.

Edited from "Los Angeles Lifts Its Minimum Wage to $15 Per Hour" 

LOS ANGELES — The nation’s second-largest city voted Tuesday to increase its minimum wage from USD9 an hour to USD15 an hour by 2020, in what is perhaps the most significant victory so far for labor groups and their allies who are engaged in a national push to raise the minimum wage.

The increase, which the City Council passed in a 14-to-1 vote, comes as workers across the country are rallying for higher wages and several large companies, including Facebook and Walmart, have moved to raise their lowest wages. Several other cities, including San Francisco, Chicago, Seattle and Oakland, Calif., have already approved increases, and dozens more are considering doing the same. In 2014, a number of Republican-leaning states like Alaska and South Dakota also raised their state-level minimum wages by ballot initiative.

The effect is likely to be particularly strong in Los Angeles, where, according to some estimates, 50% of the city’s work force earns less than USD15 an hour. Under the plan approved Tuesday, the minimum wage will rise over 5 years.

Walmart click here

Federal Poverty Level (FPL)

A measure of income level issued annually by the Department of Health and Human Services. Federal poverty levels are used to determine your eligibility for certain programs and benefits. FPL amounts currently used by the Marketplace for 2016:

  • $11,880 for individuals
  • $16,020 for a family of 2
  • $20,160 for a family of 3
  • $24,300 for a family of 4
  • $28,440 for a family of 5
  • $32,580 for a family of 6
  • $36,730 for a family of 7
  • $40,890 for a family of 8
An adult earning USD8.38 an hour, and working 40 hours a week, earns 335.20 a week, which is $17,430.4 a year.

Edited from "A Living Wage" by Senator Bernie Sanders, Apr 2016, published on

Millions of Americans work for totally inadequate wages. We must ensure that no full-time worker lives in poverty. The current federal minimum wage is starvation pay and must become a living wage. We must increase it to USD15 an hour over the next several years.

We must also establish equal pay for women. It’s unconscionable that women earn less than men for performing the same work.

Millions of American employees are working 50 or 60 hours a week with no overtime pay. That is why Bernie is  encouraging the Obama Administration to ensure that more workers receive overtime pay protection. The Administration’s new rule extending that protection to everyone making less than USD947 a week is a step in the right direction. It is a win for our economy and for our workers.

Lastly, we must support and strengthen the labor movement to ensure that workers have a say in their own economic futures. That’s why Bernie has been a strong supporter of the Employee Free Choice Act, which would make it easier for workers to organize and bargain collectively.

Key Actions

  • Proposed a national USD15 per hour minimum wage.
  • Led the effort to increase the minimum wage for federal contract workers to USD10.10 an hour.
  • Introduced the “Workplace Democracy Act” to strengthen the role of unions and the voices of working people on the job.
  • As mayor of Burlington, was a strong collaborator with unions.
  • Leading the fight in the Senate for a USD15 an hour minimum wage and a union for fast food workers, and federal contract workers.