PHILADELPHIA – January 22, 2019 – On Martin Luther King Day, State Senator Art Haywood (D-Montgomery/Philadelphia) joined community sponsors POWER, the Unitarian Society of Germantown, Raise the Wage PA!, activists, and advocates for a Raise the Wage Rally. To commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King’s dedication to service and equal rights for workers, the rally was held outside of the McDonald’s on 29 E. Chelten Avenue. Speakers and advocates discussed the need for an increase in the minimum wage and how the current wage rate has negatively affected hardworking individuals in the Commonwealth.

“Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., said ‘the time is always right to do what is right’ and I share the same sentiment,” said Senator Haywood. “Hardworking individuals deserve a working wage, and this year we will support McDonald’s employees in their fight to receive livable wages.”

“Our city has just raised its wage for contracted and subcontracted workers to $15, exercising the fullest extent of their power as city council members. It is now time for private companies, like McDonald’s, to stop feeding their workers poverty wages. We stand with State Senator Art Haywood in calling for raising the wage.” Jordan Ford, POWER Philadelphia Community Organizer.

“We are called to do the right thing and help hardworking people come out of poverty and into lives with more choices and dignity.” Reverend Kent Matthies of the Unitarian Society of Germantown said.

“It’s important to note that we don’t say Pennsylvanians need a raise, we say Pennsylvania needs a raise because every penny of an increase to the minimum wage is put back in the economy,” John Meyerson, Convener of Raise the Wage PA! said. “Not one cent winds up in a Swiss bank account or the Cayman Islands. It’s spent locally, and it’s spent immediately. We all benefit.”

Last year, Senator Haywood hosted a rally with the Unitarian Society of Germantown and Raise the Wage PA! outside of CVS Pharmacy. This was one of the actions that led the company to raise their hourly wage to $11 an hour in April 2018.