Terri Gerstein Calls for Raising the Federal Minimum Wage

Terri Gerstein (’95), Director of the State and Local Enforcement Project at the Harvard Law School Labor and Worklife Program, contributed an opinion to The Progressive magazine advocating raising the federal minimum wage and citing the Economic Policy Institute’s research finding its current real “value” to be the lowest in sixty-six years (“It’s Time to Raise the Federal Minimum Wage,” Aug. 2). “The lingering low federal minimum wage drags down communities where it’s the only pay standard, while in contrast, raising the wage generally has a positive ripple effect, even on workers making more than the minimum rate. The inflation rate matters, but it isn’t the only factor in whether people can cover the basics. . . . Thirteen years is long enough. It’s far past time to raise the federal minimum wage.”