Hardworking families need a raise to make ends meet

petty-family-photo-08Low and unstable incomes are the primary reasons hardworking people seek help from EFAA. On average, our clients’ incomes are well below the Federal poverty level and a long way from being able to support a family without assistance. A higher, more dependable income is their most basic need.

Along with broad support from the community, including the Boulder Chamber of Commerce, and The Community Foundation Serving Boulder County, EFAA supports passage of Colorado ballot initiative 101 to raise the Sate minimum wage. Getting a raise is an important step for providing greater economic stability and opportunity for the families EFAA serves. While we recognize that effects will be felt differently across the State, the need for low-income wages to rise in Boulder County is crucial given local housing and childcare costs.

Currently, the annual income for a full-time minimum wage earner in Colorado is $17,285, below the Federal poverty level of $20,090 for a family of three. At $12 per hour, a minimum wage job would provide an annual income of $24,960.

Raising the minimum wage can lift working families out of poverty. It’s in everyone’s best interest when hard-working people can become more self-sufficient and have money to spend in the community.

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  1. What is a minimal hourly wage in Colorado then? It shouldn't be like that. Hard working people deserve to be able to live with dignity. I am not talking about a lavish lifestyle but modest yet safe and not worrying about future, food etc. What can be done about it?

    • Thank you for your comment, Agatha. You ask a good question. Last year, the Colorado state minimum wage was $8.31 per hour. New legislation was voted in during this last election cycle that will raise the state minimum wage .90 per hour each year until it reaches $12 per hour. This will help working families at this wage eek out an income that is a little over the Federal poverty line for a family of three. This impacts people differently, depending on where in the state they live, the local cost of living and the seasonality of their work. Many companies and organizations have chosen to raise their lowest wage employees to above minimum wage. EFAA will continue to study this issue and will share information and make suggestions here on our website as to what we can do to help hardworking families be able to meet their most basic needs. Thank you for your support.