INDIANAPOLIS -- Protestors demonstrated across the state Friday demanding that Indiana leaders raise the minimum wage.
Despite recent news that Indiana’s unemployment rate is at a 7-year low, activists say too many newly created jobs in the state are low paying.
Protestors criticized Gov. Mike Pence for making Indiana what they call a low-wage island. Illinois, Michigan and Ohio all have a minimum wages above $8 per hour; and earlier this year, Kentucky’s governor signed an executive order increasing wages for some workers to $10.10. Members from the Raise the Wage Indiana Coalition are calling on Pence to do the same.
Earlier this week, the governor touted Indiana’s 4.9 percent unemployment rate and said the state is making progress on wages.
“Our labor force is growing – more than 110,000 net new jobs in the state of Indiana since I became governor," Pence said. "I am very encouraged by the fact as well that since 2013, 60 percent of the jobs created in Indiana are above the state average wage.”
But IU Law Professor Fran Quigley points out that more than a third of Hoosiers are considered low-income.
Indiana is one of 20 states that hasn’t raised its minimum wage above the federal requirement.