Re: Minimum Wage Increase to reduce homelessness (fwd--NCH)

Virginia Sellner (
Fri, 12 Dec 1997 20:18:31 -0800

>To: (Tom Boland)
>From: (Virginia Sellner)
>Subject: Re: Minimum Wage Increase to reduce homelessness (fwd--NCH)
>It may be a step in the right direction but it is still too small a step.
Minimum wage now is $5.15 and hour isn't it?  And to take 5 years to get to
something that might come close to being enough in say Wyoming right now, it
will not be enough in 2002.  Not unless along with it there is an increase
in affordable housing.  In Cheyenne they are NOT building things that are
affordable for low income families -- they have built several projects
recently that they claim is solving the lack of affordable housing problem,
but it is NOT doing it for low income -- they're left out -- it is solving
the problem for middle income people however, but that isn't going to help
the most vulnurable within the community nor is it going to do much for the
homeless -- they still cannot give off the street and stay off even in
Wyoming with the present minimum wage -- 
>>FWD from National Coalition for the Homeless
>>                                   Minimum Wage Increase
>>       BACKGROUND:
>>The leading cause of homelessness in the United States is the inability of
>>poor people to afford housing.  Housing costs have risen significantly over
>>the last decade, while the incomes of poor and middle-class Americans have
>>stagnated. The millions of Americans who are unemployed or work in
>>low-paying jobs are among the most vulnerable to becoming homeless. The
>>connection between impoverished workers and homelessness can be seen in
>>homeless shelters, many of which house significant numbers of full-time
>>wage earners. The U.S. Conference of Mayors 1996 survey of 29 U.S. cities
>>found that almost one out of five homeless persons is employed in full- or
>>part-time jobs.
>>Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA) has introduced legislation, The American
>>Family Fair Minimum Wage Act (S. 1009), to increase the minimum wage by 50
>>cents an hour in each of the next three years, and by 30 cents an hour in
>>each of the following two years. Under this bill, the minimum wage would
>>increase from $5.65 an hour to $7.25 an hour by 2002. While this new wage
>>would still be insufficient to cover the costs of housing in many
>>communities (see the new report, "Out of Reach," by the National Low Income
>>Housing Coalition), it is a step in the right direction.
>>Please call your Senators and urge them to support this critical
>>legislation.  All Members of Congress may be reached through the U.S.
>>Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121.
Virginia D. Sellner
Wyoming Coalition for the Homeless
P. O. Box 1232
Cheyenne, WY 82003-1232
(307) 637-8634