Senate Blocks Raising the Minimum Wage for LGBT Americans

Today, the U.S. Senate blocked a key vote on the Fair Minimum Wage Act (S. 460), a bill that would raise the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $10.10 per hour by 2015. Provisions in the bill would have also tied minimum wage increases to cost of living increases, and eventually, raised the wage for tipped workers, which has remained frozen for the last 20 years.

National Center for Transgender Equality Executive Director Mara Keisling said, “The Senate’s failure to move the minimum wage bill forward is a disappointing blow to transgender and LGBT Americans who are more likely than most to scrape by on poverty-level wages. Transgender people are four times more likely to be living in extreme poverty on less than $10,000 per year.”

Raise the Minimum Wage

Keisling added, “In one of the wealthiest countries in the world, certain Senators have decided to play politics with our nation’s poor instead of upholding their moral duty to help all families care for their loved ones.”

The National Center for Transgender Equality joined the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in issuing a fact sheet on how raising the minimum wage would affect LGBT people. As the fact sheet states, though there is little data on the number of LGBT minimum wage workers, a significant percentage of LGBT people are minimum wage earners given what is known about rates of poverty among LGBT people.

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5 Responses to Senate Blocks Raising the Minimum Wage for LGBT Americans

  1. Drena says:

    Wow… In Canada the minimum wage is like at least $9.50 and counting, depending on the province and even then most employers pay more than that (like $11-$12/hr) and they don’t care about sexual orientation but whether you can do the job. News like this makes me glad I live in Canada.

  2. greetingsfromyonkers says:

    Your headline is extremely misleading. Congress blocked a minimum wage increase for EVERYBODY, not just LGBTers.

    If transgender people want to get out of poverty, they have the same options we all have: work two jobs, upgrade their skills, bunk with a roommate, take up a vegetarian diet, etc.

    One reason I am not overly supportive of the LGBT crowd is that they cannot accept any sort of life limitation, and make everything about their sexual identities. Grow up, people. Life is hard, and straight people st3uggle with all sorts of things too.

    • Well, I have to disagree with you and not because I am a transsexual. The fact is that people aren’t hiring transsexuals because of the fact they are transsexuals. There’s a lot of discrimination out there and it’s not always that clear cut. Life IS hard for straight people but it’s even harder for transsexuals. Transsexuals DON’T always have the same options as straight people. Now, it is true that it’s easier for transsexuals to find a job in certain parts of the country, it takes money to move to those areas and still it doesn’t guarantee they will find a job. Regarding upgrading skills, there is discrimination in schools also. There are schools that will turn away a student just because they are transsexual. See, you have to actually live as a transsexual to see what it’s like. There are also safety concerns. Some workers might not like working with transsexuals and they can resort to violence or other tactics to get them to leave. I bet you have never been turned down for a haircut have you? I called a salon one time and asked them if they would have a problem doing my hair. Their response was, “Maybe you should go somewhere else.” And that’s just wanting a haircut. Imagine asking for a job? Even with discrimination laws in place, they don’t always work. They can use any excuse to turn you away. If you ask for housing, they don’t have anything available. Ask for a job, they are not hiring, ask to take a class, all their classes are full. Do you see where I am coming from?It is easier to be gay than to be transsexual. People first judge you on your outer appearance. Now, there are some transsexuals that have the image of a natural born female and have less problems. There are some transsexuals that aren’t born with that gift and they have it a lot harder. Me myself, I don’t have a problem. People see me as a female and treat me as such. But if I had to disclose my born gender I would probably have problems, especially in the rural area where I live. It’s not about growing up. It’s about facing the facts and finding a way to make it in life in a way to minimize safety issues and to show people we aren’t a threat. Like I said, yes straight people struggle with all sorts of things too but we have the added struggle. When you walk out your front door do you wonder if people are seeing a woman or a man? Do you wonder if you look the part that particular day? Do you worry that someone might attack you because of you just being you? Do you worry that your stubble on your face is showing enough for people to think you may not be who you say you are? Sure, straight people have it hard and I’m not denying that. I’m just saying we have extra stuggles and extra things to worry about.

    • jawj4291 says:

      You are right about the minimum wage block however wrong about the make everything about their. It is about discrimination. The limitation those of us in the transgender community faces is we are shunned by society because we do not fit there ideas of normal there for a lot of employers won’t even concider us for jobs. Society is the ones who need to grow up. They think they have the right to tell others what normal is yet they don’t fully live up to there own standards of normal. As for your comment about life being heard, Not all transgender poeple are lgb. I identify as a transgenderist and I am straight. I hide who I am to a point just so I can have a job, Yes my co workers know, My direct boss knows, and even HR knows. They do not allow me to be who I am fully because society deems it abnormal. I live with my parents, I help with the bills as I should and I work a job barley making more than min wage. Yes my dad works but between the both of us we barley scrape by so don’t try claiming getting a room mate helps. 2 Jobs puts you in a higher tax bracket there for not much help there. Then you have 16 hours a day guessing you are working 40 hours a weak at both jobs witch is the only way having a second job is going to help any leaving 8 hours of time off a day and 2 days off if the days off are the same on both jobs not the case in most. So good by time with family and friends. No time for dating as you sleep most of those 8 hours and both days off or if only 1 day off all that day just to catch up on what sleep you can. That leads to loosing friends and if you were in a relationship it is gone. You don’t have time for that.

      The porblem is min wage and cost of living are way wrong, Min wage is to low and cost of living is to high. No one should have to work 2 jobs just to scrape by.

  3. I am a transsexual and I am not in favor of raising the minimum wage. I know I’m the minority but here is why I am against it. If the minimum wage is raised, the prices of commodities would have to be raised to compensate the business owner to match their profits. What good is a wage increase if the prices have to increase as well? I mean say the minimum wage would increase to even say $100 an hour but bread costs something like $10 a loaf. If the business owner has to pay the worker more money the business owner has to increase his prices so he can pay the worker and not lose any profits.

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