October 30, 2014
ISSUE | PRISON FILE Six who stood up As the mother of one inmate, I thank The Inquirer for its coverage of the six State Correctional Institution at Dallas inmates who blew the whistle on coerced suicide and abuse at the prison in Luzerne County ("Advocates for 6 prisoners in Phila. to seek support," Oct. 25). I also offer this clarification so that readers understand the impossibility of rioting from solitary confinement: Neither then-inmate Derrick Stanley nor any of the other men still confined were outside their solitary-confinement cells.
October 25, 2014 |
State Rep. Brendan Boyle has made the growing gap between the rich and the rest a fitting centerpiece of his campaign to represent the 13th Congressional District, a mostly middle-class area with pockets of poverty spanning parts of Northeast Philadelphia and Montgomery County. The 37-year-old Philadelphia Democrat advocates raising the minimum wage to help the working poor and increasing taxation of passive income such as stocks and bonds, noting that wage earners pay higher effective rates than investors.
October 25, 2014 |
Gov. Christie on Thursday stood by comments earlier this week - criticized by Democrats - that he was "tired" of efforts to raise the minimum wage. "I'm going to be very clear, and I'll say it again: I do not think parents in this country are sitting around the kitchen table saying to themselves that their lives would be better if their children could only make a higher minimum wage," Christie told reporters during a campaign stop with Republican congressional candidate Tom MacArthur at Mastoris Diner in Bordentown.
October 3, 2014 |
AS RECENTLY cited in the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey, Philadelphia is still the "poorest of America's 10 largest cities. " While the report showed that 9,000 residents moved out of poverty last year, and that is encouraging, it's hard to take any comfort when so many of our fellow citizens remain in poverty, many of them children and elderly. Over the last 20 years we have witnessed growth in the gap between the haves and have nots and the squeezing of the middle class.
October 1, 2014 |
A lunchtime rally at the Delaware County Courthouse on Monday was billed as a fight for increasing the minimum wage, but it took on the character of a Democratic campaign rally, with not a single low-wage earner in sight. State Sen. Daylin Leach (D., Montgomery), who has proposed increasing the hourly minimum from the current $7.25 to $12, said the only way to raise the minimum wage is to elect Democrats. "We have 36 days to make this happen," Leach said. Reached before the rally, Andrew Reilly, Delaware County Republican Party chairman, said an increase "would likely hurt the very people proponents are trying to help" as it would end up impacting businesses.
September 19, 2014
THE U.S. CENSUS released figures this week that show that the national poverty rate has decreased for the first time since 2006. Don't rush to plan a victory parade, though. The percentage of people in poverty has dropped slightly, but the implications are more mathematical than practical: Median household income has remained the same, and the number of those in poverty in 2013 - 45.3 million - is about the same as the year before. And worse news: The percentage of people living below the poverty level in the Philadelphia metro area rose slightly from 2010 to 2013, from 12.7 percent to 13.5 percent; poverty rates in the city fell slightly.
September 16, 2014
ONE OF the points that the Democratic candidate for governor makes is that he supports raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour. On his website he cites the Economic Policy Institute and endorses their proposal to raise the minimum wage to the aforementioned $10.10. But when you go to their website you find that their plan calls for a $0.95 wage increase over three years which eventually gets to $10.10 in 2016. I don't believe that Wolf has made that differentiation clear. So if you're thinking that if you vote for Mr. Wolf in November that you're going to be getting paid $10.10 as soon as he assumes office, then you're mistaken.
September 12, 2014 |
EAST BRUNSWICK, N.J. - They bashed President Obama, praised each other's leadership, and shared a hug on stage. Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and Gov. Christie, who campaigned for Romney in the run-up to the 2012 election, were together again Wednesday - this time at a fund-raiser for the New Jersey Republican Party that doubled as a 52d birthday celebration for Christie. And this time Christie, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, is the one publicly mulling a bid for the Republican nomination in 2016 - though he assured attendees Wednesday night that he was focused on his "main job" as governor.
September 4, 2014 |
IN THE SPIRIT of a 1970s Burger King commercial, low-paid fast-food workers in Philadelphia - and around the nation - say they're more determined than ever to have it their way. Tomorrow, employees not just from Burger King but also from McDonald's, KFC, Popeyes and other iconic fast-food chains seeking a $15-an-hour wage and the right to unionize hope to stage their largest one-day job action ever - punctuated by sit-ins and other acts of civil...
July 17, 2014 |
New Jersey's servers, bellhops, and bartenders earn lower hourly wages than their counterparts in Pennsylvania and Delaware, pushing them into poverty, according to a report released Wednesday. "Instead of dealing with the needs of people who work for tipped wages, we've largely ignored them," said Gordon MacInnes, president of New Jersey Policy Perspective, the organization that released the report. Under New Jersey law, the state's 140,000 "tipped" workers must be paid a minimum of $2.13 an hour, which is also the federal minimum wage for tipped workers and hasn't changed since 1991.