Residents will disrupt Cal City City Council Meeting demanding city to opt-in minimum wage increase
Calumet City—(ENEWSPF)—July 13, 2017. Organizing groups, residents, and workers will come together to publicly address Calumet City Mayor Michelle Markiewicz Qualkinbush and the Calumet City Council who quietly opted out of the Cook County minimum wage increase on June 22nd despite an overwhelming 80% of Calumet City voters who supported increased wages for an already economically distressed area.
Calumet City workers and community leaders with Centro de Trabajadores Unidos, Restaurant Opportunities Center – Chicago, and Southsiders Organized for Unity & Liberation will gather on Thursday, July 13, at 7 p.m. at Calumet City City Hall, 204 Pulaski Rd, or watch live at: https://www.facebook.com/Centro-de-Trabajadores-Unidos-341406791968/
Background: Calumet City is part of south suburban Cook County. The town has a population of 37,042 of which 72% is African American, 14% is Latino and 11% is Caucasian. The per capita income for the city is about $19,483 and approximately 22% of the population lives below the poverty line.
On April 4th, 2017, eighty percent of Calumet City residents voted in favor of a referendum opting in to the Cook County minimum wage increase. Another eighty two percent voted in favor of another One Fair Wage referendum asking voters if they were in support of raising the minimum wage to $15/hour for all workers including, tipped workers, who are frequently left out of minimum wage increases. On June 22nd, Mayor Michelle Markiewicz Qualkinbush quietly pushed for City Council to vote in favor of opting out of the minimum wage increase despite the overwhelming support from the area.
Calumet City opting out of the minimum wage increase is a part of the larger wave of other suburban areas opting out and its effects will be devastating. Faith leaders, advocates, residents, and workers will demand that Mayor Michelle Markiewicz Qualkinbush meet with residents to discuss this issue with her and to opt in to the county minimum wage increase recognizing tipped workers must also be included.