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Press Release: Sister Simone Campbell Calls for Raise in Minimum Wage at U.S. Capitol Press Conference

FOR RELEASE: March 5, 2014                                                                           

CONTACT: Stephanie Niedringhaus, 202-347-9797 x224,

Washington DC: Today, Sister Simone Campbell, speaking at a press conference in the U.S. Capitol, called for a raise in the minimum wage. Standing with Senator Mazie Hirono and Nyah Potts (pictured above), Senator Barbara Boxer and other strong advocates, she spoke about the moral imperative to pay workers a fair wage:

Complete Written Remarks by Sister Simone Campbell, Executive Director, NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby

Pope Francis said that a society that “does not pay a just wage, that does not give work” to people and that “only looks to its balanced books, that only seeks profit” is unjust. He says the role of government is to respond to people’s needs and ensure the common good.

Two weeks ago I met Robin who works full time at a national clothing chain store. Robin is making minimum wage and was very excited that she had a new blue dress that she got at her store at a large discount. She told me that she didn’t think anyone could tell by her appearance that she was living in a homeless shelter because she could not afford rent. Her dream is to make enough to have a room of her own to call home. This is a dream of all struggling workers.

Some want to say that the issue of poverty is laziness and a lack of incentive to work. However, I say that the issue is wages, and raising the minimum wage is a faithful and just way forward. Raising the minimum wage would help to realize Robin’s very simple dream for a home of her own AND will make us a more just society.

In our nation, it is unjust that highly profitable companies pay poverty level wages to workers who create the wealth for thos