Daphne Hunt

Recent Articles

Wage War

Bob Schwartz is out to raise Arizona's minimum wage. Or, more accurately, he's trying to create one, since the state has no minimum wage of its own and relies instead on the federal standard, which has been stuck at $5.15 since 1997. Last summer the Tucson lawyer launched a campaign to collect 300,000 signatures to secure the necessary 183,917 to place a minimum-wage referendum on the state's ballot. Schwartz's campaign, Five Fifteen Isn't Working, recently folded into the broader work of the Arizona Minimum Wage Coalition, which seeks an Arizona hourly minimum of $6.75. Notably, the campaign includes the highly effective Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). The United States is approaching the longest period ever without an increase in the federal minimum wage, the current record being from 1981 to 1990. Federal inaction since 1997 has eroded the purchasing power of the minimum wage by about 21 percent -- leaving low-wage employees increasingly worse off,...