It’s no secret that for the last 40 years, working and middle class families have gotten a bad deal in our country. Despite continued inflation, increasing costs of living and massive growth in productivity, wages have stayed flat. In fact, when adjusted for inflation, US workers earning the federal minimum wage today have less buying power than minimum wage workers nearly five decades ago. In 1968 workers earned, in inflation-adjusted dollars, $10.90 an hour, over 3 dollars more than today’s federal minimum wage of $7.25 and still more than California’s minimum wage of $10.50 an hour, which is still not even close to what a living wage should be in California.

We live in a much wealthier country than we did in 1968, but instead of that growth being shared amongst workers it has been re-distributed to the 1%, driving us to the highest level of income inequality in recorded human history. Not only is this bad economics, it is beyond immoral. No person deserves to live in poverty, especially when they work 40 plus hours a week juggling 2 or 3 jobs and still failing to make ends meet. That is no failure of those individuals, but the failure of capitalist system run by vultures.

That is why in Richmond I fought hard with my Richmond Progressive Alliance counterparts to raise the local minimum wage to $15 bucks an hour by the end of 2018, tracking inflation every year thereafter.  As Lt. Governor I will fight to increase the minimum wage and move toward a true living wage for all Californians. We must ensure there is system where the 99% share fully in the fruits of their labor, not just left with the crumbs from the 1%.

But I cannot do this alone, in order to bring dignity and security back to workers it is going to take a movement, as it did in Richmond. In that fight I learned that such a movement can be built quickly when we organize inclusively, focusing on policy not party affiliations and free of corporate control. That is why today I ask you to join my corporate-free campaign with a donation of $15 dollars, to show solidarity for a future where every worker gets the dignity of earning a living wage.

Click here to make a contribution of any size to my campaign that is powered by the people, not corporations and the elites!

Thank for your support and Season’s Greetings to all! A better California is possible!