January 22, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Adriano Espaillat (NY-13) joined 180 Democrats in unveiling the Raise the Wage Act of 2019.  The bill would gradually raise the minimum wage to $15 by 2024, index future minimum wage increases to median wage growth, and ensure all workers are paid at least the full federal minimum wage by phasing out the subminimum wages for tipped workers, youth workers, and workers with disabilities.

“American workers are overdue for a raise,” said Rep. Adriano Espaillat (NY-13).  “Gradually raising the minimum wage to $15 by 2024 nationwide will be good for workers, good for businesses, and good for the economy.  I am proud to stand with my Democratic colleagues to support this proposal that would put money in the pockets of 40 million hardworking Americans and support local economies and the economic growth of our nation.”

Currently, there is no place in America where a full-time worker can make the $7.25 federal minimum wage and afford the basic essentials. The federal minimum wage has not been raised in nearly a decade. This year, the minimum wage in New York City increased to $15 for businesses with more than 10 employees.

According to a 2016 Gallup poll, 58% of Americans support increasing the minimum wage to $15.

The Raise the Wage Act would gradually raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 over the next six years to lift millions of workers out of poverty, stimulate local economies, and restore the value of minimum wage; index future increases in the federal minimum wage to median wage growth to ensure the value of minimum wage does not once again erode over time; and, guarantee tipped workers are paid at least the full federal minimum wage by repealing the subminimum wage for tipped workers, which will ensure consistent, livable pay.

Additionally, the bill would guarantee teen workers are paid at least the full federal minimum wage by repealing the rarely used subminimum wage for youth workers; and, end subminimum wage certificates for individuals with disabilities to provide opportunities for individuals with disabilities to be competitively employed, taxpaying citizens and participate more fully in their communities.

To read the bill text of the Raise the Wage Act, click here.

To read the section-by-section of the Raise the Wage Act, click here.

To read a fact sheet on Raise the Wage Act, click here.


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First elected to Congress in 2016, Rep. Adriano Espaillat is serving his second term in Congress where he serves as a member of the influential U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and the House Committee on Education and the Workforce. He is a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) and serves in a leadership role as CHC Whip. He is also chairman of the CHC Task Force for Transportation, Infrastructure and Housing.  Rep. Espaillat’s Congressional District includes Harlem, East Harlem, northern Manhattan and the north-west Bronx. To find out more about Rep. Espaillat, visit online at


Media inquiries: Candace Randle Person at