$15 minimum-wage movement sets sights on more states

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

NEW YORK (AP) — California and New York —where almost 1 in 5 Americans live — are on their way to raising their minimum wage to $15 an hour. And the activists who spearheaded those efforts are now setting their sights on other similarly liberal, Democratic-led states.

Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington are among the states with active "Fight for $15" efforts, and even economic experts who oppose the higher rate see it gaining momentum.

The idea faces headwinds in more conservative and rural states in the South and the Midwest. But activists believe it is picking up steam, even if their two big victories to date were in two very receptive places: trend-setting, labor-friendly states with a high cost of living and a yawning gap between rich and poor.