That Union Thing

Several studies indicate that the economic recovery has reached only a small percentage of Floridians.

A study by the Alliance for a Just Society reports that 61 percent of job openings in Florida pay less than a living wage, and a study by the Economic Analysis and Research Network reports that between 2009 and 2012, the top one percent of wage earners in Florida saw their income rise 39.5 percent while the bottom 99 percent of wage earners saw their income fall 7.1 percent.

Walmart has announced that it will increase wages for half a million employees. Walmart employees will now earn at least $9 an hour by this April and at least $10 an hour by February 2016. The Federal minimum wage has been $7.25 per hour since 2007, but twenty-nine states have minimum wages higher than the federal rate, including Florida at $8.05 per hour.

Florida now has more residents than California who have bought health insurance through an Affordable Care Act marketplace, making it first in the nation. About 1.6 million Floridians have enrolled through the marketplace in its second year. Twenty percent of Floridians still lack health insurance, and it is estimated that one million low-income residents would qualify if the state agreed to expand Medicaid coverage to its residents.


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