Gloria to walk the walk for minimum-wagers

Councilman aims to highlight "deceptive petitions" slithering about town

Todd Gloria, flanked by supporters of his "Live the Wage Challenge"
  • Todd Gloria, flanked by supporters of his "Live the Wage Challenge"

City council president Todd Gloria, who introduced the hotly contested ordinance calling for a minimum-wage increase and the provision of sick days, is embarking on a weeklong stint wherein he and supporters will attempt to live on the current California minimum wage of $9 per hour.

Dubbed the "Live the Wage Challenge," Gloria and supporters will attempt to maintain a weekly budget of $51 for food, transportation, and other expenses — the remainder of a full-time minimum-wage worker's paycheck is estimated to go toward rent and taxes, according to an affordability study performed earlier this year.

"I hope that through our experiences we can personify or explain why this is so necessary,” said Gloria in announcing the endeavor. "I'm doing this to highlight that they should not sign the deceptive petitions [to place a proposal to reverse the increase on the ballot]. I'm going to walk in the shoes of the people who have to live this life every single day."

Mayor Kevin Faulconer and former mayor/local chamber of commerce president Jerry Sanders, both of whom back a petition to place reversal of the measure before voters, have been challenged to undertake the same endeavor — neither have responded, though both sides will likely continue to seek media attention as the signature-gathering campaign continues.

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Not too many supporters in the picture above.

Todd Gloria is to be commended for doing this. He will however, quickly see the problems low income wage earners face every day. I don't know where Mr. Gloria lives or how much he pays to live there, but I suspect he would be forced to move if he had to permanently continue to live on his new budget. I also think he would soon learn where the free food distribution facilities are, and where the thrift stores are. This is how the minimum wage workers are making it: getting supplementary help when and where they can, and trying to keep their expenditures as low as possible. Considering the profits being made by their employers, it is inexcusable. By raising the minimum wage, the local economy will benefit immediately as it is those at the lower income range who spend the most locally. They are not socking it away in the stock market or using it to visit Paris. Kudos to Mr. Gloria. At least he is trying to do something for those who actually need the help and will most definitely appreciate it.

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