Members of Congress are not eligible for the loan repayment benefit.
(Photo: Paul Singer, USA TODAY)
WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- A new poll shows that 80 percent of Americans support raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour and want it to be a Congressional priority.
The poll was conducted on behalf of the National Employment Law Project. It also found that 75 percent of Americans think it's important for Congress to raise the minimum wage over the next year.
The minimum wage was last increased four years ago. Adjusted for inflation, the minimum wage today buys less than it did in 1956 and does not keep up with the cost of living.
Representatives George Miller and Donna Edwards announced the results of this poll on July 24 and called on Congress to pass the Fair Minimum Wage Act.
"The time has come for American workers to get a raise," said Rep. Miller, the senior Democrat on the House Education and the Workforce Committee. "The American people understand that a decent minimum wage is not a handout. It's about valuing work. It's about growing the economy from the bottom up by increasing working families' purchasing power."
"Introduced by Rep. Miller and Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) in March, the Fair Minimum Wage Act (H.R. 1010) will increase the minimum wage in three steps, from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour. The rate will then be indexed to inflation each year thereafter. In addition, the legislation will increase the required cash wage for tipped workers in annual 85 cent increases, from today's $2.13 per hour until the tip credit reaches 70 percent of the regular minimum wage, which was originally proposed by Rep. Edwards," officials said in a news release.
More than 30 million workers will get a raise under this bill.
President Obama has also addressed the importance of increasing the minimum wage.