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As you know, Our Revolution and One Fair Wage are working hard to raise wages and end the subminimum wage in cities, counties, and states around the country. And, as wages go up, we don’t want to leave any group of workers behind! 

On Monday, US Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and OFW President Saru Jayaraman spoke to thousands of Our Revolution supporters on our National Organizing Call on the next steps in Illinois, Ohio, and beyond! 

Earlier that day, they joined our organizers and worker activists in the Chicago Loop to call out the National Restaurant Association — the leading opponent of higher pay for restaurant workers.

The NYT recently exposed the group’s #ServSafeScam by which it collects workers’ money through food handling certification and uses it to lobby to keep their wages low.

“The Restaurant Association should not be taking this money as a ‘not-for-profit’ then spending it as if it was their own and using it to lobby against fair wages,” Rep. Schakowsky said. “I think we should ask the IRS to investigate that.”

And now, Saru told us, new info is coming out about the lobby’s push to weaken child labor laws in order to fill gaps left by thousands of restaurant workers refusing to work for poverty wages post-pandemic.

“We’re hearing stories of 11- and 12-year-olds working,” Saru told us Monday. “And now, we saw the Iowa Senate bill for minors to handle alcohol — wholly from the Restaurant Association driving this.”

“As horrible as it is, it’s a sign they’re losing and workers are winning,” she explained. “They’re resorting to this because adults are refusing to work for $2 and $3 for the first time since Emancipation when this wage structure was created.”

We’re on the winning side! Thanks to your support and activism, our bills are advancing at the city, county, and state levels across the country. 

New Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson – who we helped elect last month! – has come out in a big way to support our Raise the Wage campaign in the city. And, US Rep. Schakowsky said the Illinois state legislation looks promising given the Democrats’ supermajority.

Our organizing work in Maryland is also paying off:  “It looks like we’ll have the votes to end the subminimum wage in Prince George’s County,” Saru said.

In Chicago this week, IL Rep. Abdelnasser Rashid and Chicago Aldermen and Cook County Democratic Vice Chair Mike Rodriguez joined us in addressing the city council to push a city-wide tipped minimum wage ordinance. 

And, Our Revolution Field Director Mike Oles and our crew activated our Raise the Wage Ohio Team at the State House in Columbus on Monday to launch a new petition for a higher state minimum wage and an end to subminimum wages.