Mayor Gloria, local leaders celebrate minimum wage in city reaching $15 per hour

SAN DIEGO – Continuing his efforts to support working families in San Diego, Mayor Todd Gloria joined local leaders and workers on Thursday, December 16 to celebrate the minimum wage increase reaching $15 an hour, which becomes effective Jan. 1, 2022. Mayor Gloria authored the City’s Earned Sick Leave and Minimum Wage Ordinance, which originally set the path toward $15-per-hour, when he was a Councilmember.

“I have long believed that no one who works full time should have to live in poverty, and this increase in our minimum wage is the next step in getting us there,” Mayor Todd Gloria said. “Finally getting the minimum wage in San Diego to $15 fulfills a longtime goal and will make a difference in the lives of thousands of working families in our city. I’m grateful to everyone who has been involved in bringing this significant milestone to fruition.”

In accordance with city and state law, all employees in San Diego who perform at least two hours of work in one or more calendar weeks of the year within the City of San Diego will receive a wage increase from $14 to $15 an hour.

“One job should be enough,” said City Council President Sean Elo-Rivera, representative for District 9. “On January 1st, thousands of workers who are the foundation of our local economy will receive a well-deserved pay raise. Our city’s signature Earned Sick Leave and Minimum Wage Ordinance demonstrates a commitment from the City of San Diego to treat working people with the dignity and respect every person deserves. I am grateful to the local organizers and activists who knocked on doors and called voters; their advocacy led to a resounding approval at the ballot box and improved the standard of living for San Diegans for generations to come.”

The minimum wage increase is applicable to all industries and businesses, with no exceptions, and tips and gratuities do not count toward payment of minimum wage. Updated notices are available on the city’s Minimum Wage Program website and must be posted in a conspicuous place at any workplace or job site.

“As Chair of our City’s Economic Development and Intergovernmental Relations Committee, I am working hard to usher in an economic recovery that puts people first,” said Councilmember Raul Campillo, representative for District 7. “With the high cost of living in San Diego, workers deserve a living wage. I was proud to join the Mayor this morning to celebrate this pay raise for thousands of hard-working San Diegans.”

Minimum wage in the rest of California is also increasing on Jan. 1, 2022, to $14 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer employees and $15 per hour for employers with 26 or more employees. On Jan. 1 2023, the minimum wage for employers with 25 or fewer employees also raises to $15 per hour.

“The minimum wage in California will be $15 on January 1st, 2022 because working people came together to fight for it,” said Dr. Kyra Greene, Executive Director and Board President of the Center on Policy Initiatives. “Our work is not done. Low wage workers in San Diego are still paid poverty wages, still face employers who steal their wages and still work in unsafe conditions just like the ones that stole the lives of workers in Kentucky and Illinois last week. So, we will continue to fight for higher wages, safer working conditions and justice for workers.”

Anyone who believes an employer is violating the ordinance is encouraged to file a complaint in writing with the City’s Minimum Wage Program.

“For essential workers, immigrant women like myself, communities of color and everyone struggling right now, we must have a decent wage,” said Miriam Torres, Member of SEIU United Service Workers West. “Fifteen dollars is a critical step toward helping our city recover from the pandemic and making our economy work for everyone.”

“Hotel, hospitality and service workers are the backbone of our tourism industry, and they’re also among the hardest hit by the pandemic,” said Rick Bates, Lead Research and Policy Analyst at UNITE HERE Local 30. “The minimum wage increase will be a critical step in the right direction as we strive for an inclusive economic recovery here in San Diego.”

(SD Mayor’s Office Release)

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