The Raise the Wage Michigan ballot committee is putting an initiative on the ballot for the November 2022 election in Michigan. The initiative would raise the state minimum wage to $15/hour, and end subminimum wages for tipped workers, workers with disabilities, and youth. In total, 1 million workers in Michigan will receive a raise. Click here to see the language of the initiative. The initiative is being driven by a large coalition of organizations, led by One Fair Wage, Fems for Dems, and many more groups at the intersection of community, labor and faith.
One Fair Wage works across the nation to make sure that tipped workers get the same full minimum wage as everyone else, with tips on top. In Michigan, the subminimum wage for tipped workers is just $3.67 an hour, which leaves many workers, largely women, immigrants, and people of color subject to harassment, discrimination due to the reliance on tips.
Michigan is a shining example of the persistent popular support for One Fair Wage. In 2018, One Fair Wage was on the ballot. Given the popularity of the issue, the Michigan legislature passed an increase in the tipped minimum wage to remove the measure from the ballot. The anti-worker legislature then went on to dramatically weaken the legislation and overturn the passage of One Fair Wage. In response, we focused on intensive voter turnout activities to demonstrate the people demand that the minimum wage measure not be altered. This led to increased turnout in the 2018 election.
Everything has changed since 2018. Millions of workers have left or are leaving the restaurant industry due to low wages and tips, and high levels of health risks, hostility and harassment during the pandemic. Thousands of restaurants nationwide (and hundreds in Michigan) have raised their wages to attract and retain staff, greatly reducing the opposition to One Fair Wage. We recently re-filed the ballot measure for One Fair Wage under the ballot committee name Raise the Wage.
Michigan workers need One Fair Wage now. With your help, we can win!