DES MOINES — Roughly two dozen activists rallied just outside the governor’s formal office in the Capitol after Gov. Kim Reynolds’ address, encouraging the governor and legislators to raise Iowa’s minimum wage to $15 per hour.
Iowa’s minimum wage is $7.25 per hour; it is one of 14 states that matches the federal minimum wage. Eighteen states’ minimum wages increased in 2018, according to the National Conference on State Legislatures.
Among those who spoke at the rally were a fast-food worker, a union member, a community college student, and Cathy Glasson, a union leader and Democratic candidate for governor.
“I believe the job of the governor is to raise wages and raise the standard of living for all Iowans,” Glasson said, adding that she thinks that can be accomplished with a $15 minimum wage and strong unions. “We have to do it fast, because working people and working families cannot wait any longer.”
Republican legislative leaders say they are focused on creating opportunities for middle-skill workers, not raising the minimum wage.