NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed a law that will gradually raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 and also establishes paid family leave for New York workers.
Cuomo and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton marked the occasion Monday at a victory rally at the Jacob Javits Convention Center on the West Side of Manhattan, with labor leaders and workers. As WCBS 880’s Marla Diamond reported, it was part victory party and part Clinton campaign rally.
PHOTOS: $15 Minimum Wage Rally In NYC
Cuomo said the law will grow the state’s economy and improve New Yorkers’ lives.
“At $9 an hour you can’t afford to raise a family in New York and that’s why we’re going to raise it to $15 an hour to restore fairness and decency,” Cuomo said.
Cuomo also touted other elements of his budget plan that have been approved, including paid family leave.
“We are restoring respect and pride and dignity to the worker with paid family leave, which says no one should choose between seeing their child born and earning a paycheck,” Cuomo said.
Clinton called said it was “a great day for our state” with the minimum wage hike, and predicted the movement will “sweep our country.”
“We have to do better for New York families, because when families are strong, New York is strong and America is strong,” Clinton said.
President Barack Obama said the state has taken a “historic step.”
“This action means more parents won’t have to choose between their job and caring for their new children. It means more workers can earn a higher wage to help make ends meet,” Obama said in a statement.
The law gradually raises the minimum wage to $15 in New York City by the end of 2018. On Long Island and in Westchester County, the wage would rise to $15 by the end of 2021.
The minimum wage would only rise to $12.50 in the rest of the state by 2020, with further increases tied to inflation and other economic indicators.
California’s governor signed a similar bill Monday.
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