Minimum wage going up in 2017, but advocates say it’s not enough

Minimum wage to become $11 per hour starting January 1

BOSTON (WWLP) – The new year will bring higher wages for nearly 950,000 Massachusetts workers. On January 1, the state minimum wage will increase from the current $10 per hour to $11 per hour. It is the third and final increase approved by state lawmakers in 2014, and is far higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

There has been an ongoing movement to secure higher hourly pay around the country, and here in Massachusetts. The local “Fight for $15” campaign says that workers are struggling to get by day-to-day with what they consider to be “poverty wages.”

Fast food employees and other minimum-wage workers are calling on lawmakers to increase the hourly minimum wage to $15. They also want the ability to form a union.

Businesses large and small have complained that higher wages could lead to higher prices for consumers.

The “Fight for $15” campaign plans to rally at the State House next week, and 22News will be there.