Oregon Minimum Wage Increases to $8.50

On September 20th, 2010, State Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian announced that Oregon’s minimum wage would increase to $8.50 starting January 1st.  The 10 cent increase is a result of the 1.15% increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  In 2002, Oregon voters approved Measure 25 which requires the state adjust the minimum wage to reflect inflation as measured by the CPI.

Oregon is just one of ten states that adjusts its minimum wage based on the rate of inflation.  The Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association (ORLA) opposes the legislative requirement as bad for business and has organized to repeal the requirement in the state legislature in 2003, 2005, and 2009.   As a business association that represents the interests of restaurant and lodging owners who don’t live on the $17,680 per year income of a minimum wage earner working 40 hours a week, the PRWA believes that food-and-beverage workers should have the opportunity to voice their opinions and share their story about being a minimum wage worker in the restaurant industry.

To share your story, please email it to dishingitout@pdxrwa.org.  We’d like to hear what the increase in the minimum wage means to you and your economic security.  Do you think the minimum wage represents a living wage in the Portland metro area?  Please indicate if you’d like to be contacted for an interview and please include a phone number at which you can be reached.

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