Wage Activists Want More Than Packages Out of Amazon Distribution Center

Rally calls for a $15 minimum wage in Baltimore City, more than recent increases in Maryland and the Washington D.C. region.

money out of packages
Money Out of Packages: Baltimore advocates seek highest minimum wage in region at rally near new Amazon fulfillment center.

As reported in the Baltimore Sun, the demonstrators outside the Amazon distribution center in Baltimore criticize the employment opportunities offered there as part of a call for a higher minimum wage. But the $15 dollars per hour that they demand would set them apart from the State and even the Washington D.C. region.

“We’re here because workers deserve a living wage,” said Lisa Brown, an executive vice president with Local 1199 of the Service Employees International Union — United Healthcare Workers East. “Fifteen dollars an hour takes people not totally out of poverty but it allows them to work one job so they can feed their families and not be on public assistance.”

The State of Maryland increased its minimum wage in 2014. The Maryland Minimum Wage Act of 2014 increases the Statewide minimum wage to $10.10 per hour over four years.

One year earlier, Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties passed a new minimum wage law. This local law was part of a coordinated effort with the District of Columbia to increase the minimum wages in the Washington region. The local law increases the minimum wage to $11.50 per hour by 2017. The law phases in the adjustment. This year the minimum wage is $9.55 per hour and next year it will be $10.75 per hour.

For more information about the rally in Baltimore, see the Baltimore Sun article, Minimum-wage protest targets Amazon in Baltimore. For more information about Maryland’s minimum wage and the wage increases in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, see our previous posts, Advocates Mark Increase in Montgomery County Minimum Wage, and Governor Signs Minimum Wage Law.