Why a living wage?
Income inequality and poverty are on the rise.
- The richest 5% of Durham County’s households have an average income that is 27 times greater than the poorest fifth of household.
- Nearly one in five Durham residents lives in poverty.
- Over half of the renters cannot afford fair market rent for a two-bedroom unit.
Find an economic snapshot of Durham here.
The recent Recovery from the Great Recession has not felt like a "recovery" for many North Carolina communities, with too few jobs for job-seekers, and many of the available jobs paying too little to make ends meet.
The North Carolina and federal wage minimum wage levels of $7.25/hour don’t let families earn enough to make ends meet.
When workers don’t make enough to make ends meet, families, communities and the economy suffer.
- Low-income earners tend to spend a larger proportion of earnings in the local economy, providing a stimulus effect.
- The estimated GDP impact of a minimum wage increase to $10.10, for example, would be approximately $1.3 billion in North Carolina.
A Living Wage: Good for Business, Good for Workers!
- For employers, paying a living wage can mean lower turnover, a more motivated workforce, and the increased goodwill of the community.
- For employees, a living wage is an opportunity to move from poverty toward meeting basic needs.
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