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NEWS & IDEAS

Mary Poppins Quits, Plus 5 Things You Should Know About America’s Minimum Wage

Mary Poppins Quits, Plus 5 Things You Should Know About America’s Minimum Wage

You might know her as Veronica Mars, Sarah Marshall from Forgetting Sarah Marshall, or the sloth-obsessed actress on Ellen. Kristen Bell is good at defining characters, and her latest role gives her the chance to use her talent for a good cause. Playing a realist Mary Poppins, Bell sings about the problems with America’s minimum wage.  “In every job that must be done, you must be paid in more than fun.” Staying true to the original Disney movie, the Funny or Die version shows Poppins leading children around, magically summoning birds, and telling stories via animated penguins. Watch, then learn:

1. July 24th was the fifth anniversary of the last time the federal minimum wage was raised. Though Washington state pays $9.32 per hour and D.C. offers $9.50, the nationwide requirement is 7.25 an hour.

2. 13 states raised their minimum wages on January 1, and recent data shows that those who raised the minimum wage also saw job growth. According to the Associated Press, “in the 13 states that boosted their minimums at the beginning of the year, the number of jobs grew an average of .85 percent from January through June.”

3. America’s minimum wage is low by international standards. In 2011, it was only 38 percent of the median wage and close to the lowest in the OECD (see the countries in the OECD).

4. Almost two-thirds of minimum wage workers are women. Raising the minimum wage would help nearly 15 million women.

5. The White House supports a raise from $7.25 to $10.10. They cite five more reasons why it’s important. The main takeaway? The raise would improve a lot of people's lives.

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