Austin Interfaith Wins Big on Wages in New City Budget
Leaders celebrated additional wins in areas impacting workers, children and families: $350K in increased investment in long-term job training program Capital IDEA, $3 million in added investments in parks, pools and libraries, $684K for AISD parents support specialists, $520K for Primetime after-school programming, and at least $1.6 Million for property tax breaks for seniors and disabled homeowners.Read more
COPS/Metro Living Wage Effort Wins Support of San Antonio Express-News
According to the editorial board of the San Antonio Express-News:
There is something of a social justice component to the budget presented recently to the San Antonio City Council. It contains a commendable step toward a living wage for those city employees who are paid the least.
City Manager Sheryl Sculley outlined a...2016 budget that includes a raise to $13 per hour, beginning Jan. 1, for the city's lowest-paid workers...
While $11.47 is well above the state and federal minimum wage of $7.25, ...Communities Organized for Public Service/Metro Alliance have correctly stressed the need for a "living wage."
Additional background here.
Living Wage for City Workers, San Antonio Express-News
Texas IAF Organizations Take Wage Fight Local
Texas IAF organizations in San Antonio, Austin, and El Paso are at the forefront of potential living wage victories for county and city employees. Due to the work of COPS / Metro Alliance and Austin Interfaith, the cities of San Antonio and Austin are on the verge of passing proposed budgets which would increase wages from more than $11 per hour to $13 per hour. Bexar County and El Paso County also have upcoming votes to raise the wages of county workers from $9.45 to $10 in El Paso and from $11.66 to $13 in Bexar. Graphic to the right shows the relative impact of this wage work .Read more
COPS / Metro Gains Support of Mayor on $13 / Hour Living Wage
This raise will directly impact 1,300 - 1,500 City employees who, in the words of Councilmember Ray Lopez, might no longer "have to have a second or third job." An additional 1,500 workers would indirectly benefit through wage compression, in which those currently earning close to $13 / hour will also see their wages rise.Read more
EPISO & Allies Pass Texas' 2nd Wage Theft Ordinance in El Paso
Over the next 60 days, EPISO and Border Interfaith leaders will work with the city to consider amendments potentially granting additional powers to refuse to grant, or revoke, permits and licenses to wage theft violators.Read more
Texas IAF Leverages $5 Million for Job Training
Following up on its $5 million win from the last legislative session in 2013, Texas IAF leaders succeeded in ensuring that the Adult Career Education (ACE) Grant program (and its $5 million in funding) stayed on the Texas budget. This means that Texas IAF workforce development programs (like Capital IDEA, Project ARRIBA, VIDA, Project QUEST, SkillsQuest and Capital IDEA-Houston) can apply for these funds, to expand the training they already offer.
Sisters Combat Poverty, Impacting Thousands in San Antonio
Says Sr. Pearl Ceasar:Read more
Valley Interfaith Upsets Pharr Election, Community Wins Big
Valley Interfaith leaders Eddie Anaya, Claudia Garcia, Monse Martinez, and Mauro Hernandez launched a campaign to change the power structure in Pharr, starting with meetings held in homes and at churches. Says Anaya, "We knew, with Valley Interfaith, there was only one way to do this."Read more
COPS / Metro Demands End to Detention of Refugee Families
The group attempted to deliver petitions calling for an end to imprisonment of refugee children.Read more
Texas IAF Fights Anti-Sanctuary Bill SB 185
On Monday at 8am, faith leaders across Texas arrived at the Capitol to fight Senate Bill 185, which would outlaw sanctuary cities in Texas and threaten local efforts to build better relationships between police and communities. Sponsored by State Senator Charles Perry, from Lubbock, the bill would prohibit cities from forbidding police to enforce immigration laws.Read more