Gov. Pat Quinn says one way to fight poverty is to reassess the way the minimum wage is increased in the state. (Photo used under Creative Commons from Flickr user Chris Eaves)
By Nick Gale
CHICAGO - Gov. Pat Quinn says the best way to fight poverty is with jobs and a higher minimum wage.
In response to the Census report showing poverty in Illinois on the rise, Quinn says job creation must continue and it’s time to raise the minimum wage.
“The minimum wage is set up to fight poverty,” Quinn said. “There are families in Illinois working 40 hours a week and still living in poverty. Now that just to me defies the biblical principle that if you work hard you should not live in poverty and I think it’s important that we raise the minimum wage in Illinois.”
Quinn wants to change the way the minimum wage is increased. Under current law, the General Assembly must vote on an increase. Quinn would like to see the minimum wage tied to the cost of living. As the cost of living increases, so would minimum wage.
“A number of states do that and then it automatically year after year goes up and it keeps up with the cost of living,” Quinn said.
While Quinn would like to see the minimum wage increased, pension reforms remain his top priority.