Sign that says Put Politicians on minimum wage and watch how fast things change
Next month, many of Ohio’s lowest-earning workers will get a pay boost when the minimum wage rises 25 cents, from $8.30 to $8.55. This increase ensures the minimum wage keeps pace with rising consumer prices, something Ohio citizens provided for when they voted to increase the minimum wage and keep it indexed to inflation in 2006. The automatic adjustment, which takes place every January 1st, is a critical safeguard that prevents the minimum wage from losing value over time because of inflation. Ohio’s new minimum wage will be worth just 72 percent of what the federal minimum wage was worth in 1968, $11.83 in today’s dollars. “Ohio citizens voted to increase our state minimum wage in 2006, and every year workers are helped by that forward-thinking move,” said Michael Shields, researcher at Policy Matters Ohio. “Inflation-adjustment preserves the value of the minimum wage.” Nationwide, 29 states have minimum wages above the federal rate of $7.25 an hour and 18 states plus the District of Columbia join Ohio in adjusting the wage for inflation. Each year, more states are increasing their minimum wages, and in 2018, Arkansas and Missouri -- both of which already had a minimum wage above the federal level -- voted to increase it further. “The inflation adjustment keeps Ohio workers from fallling further behind,” Shields said. “Moving forward, Ohio should put in place an increase beyond inflation to reflect our workforce’s improved productivity and get us back toward where wages once were. Stay tuned for analysis of how a stronger minimum wage could help Ohio workers more.” Policy Matter Ohio

Contact: Michael Shields