BATON ROUGE, La. — On Thursday afternoon, Gov. John Bel Edwards held a press briefing to provide an update on Louisiana’s latest winter storm recovery efforts and COVID-19 response.
However, one of the key takeaways from the one-hour briefing (shown in its entirety above) is the request for higher wages for the state’s working class.
Gov. Edwards wrote Louisiana’s congressional delegation in an effort to drum up support for a meaningful increase in the federal minimum wage as part of President Biden’s American Rescue Plan for COVID-19 relief, which may be voted on as early as this week in Congress.
The governor wrote:
Families are the foundation of our communities. Investing in the success of Louisiana families means investing in our success as a state. It means investing in opportunities.
It is unconscionable that one of our fellow citizens could work 40 hours a week for an entire year and make barely enough to be considered above the poverty line.
This is not prosperity. This is not the American Dream. I challenge anyone opposed to raising the minimum wage to imagine trying to support a family on only $15,080 – it’s simply not possible.