CCH pursues jobs initiatives that improve access to job training and living wage employment for low-wage workers.
In 2013, CCH is active in the Fight for 15, Chicago’s effort in the national movement to raise hourly wages for fast food and retail workers to $15 an hour. Senior Organizer Dollie Brewer helps mobilize people who are homeless and at-risk. In 2012, the city of Chicago reported that 13% of shelter residents were employed. This data did not include the share of homeless workers who must live doubled-up with others (per the U.S. Conference of Mayors 2012 report).
Our Jobs Project also partners with Raise Illinois, a campaign to increase the Illinois minimum wage from the $8.25 rate set in July 2010. Senate Bill 1565 would raise the Illinois minimum wage to $10.65 by 2014 – it was approved by the Illinois Senate Executive Committee in May 2012, but did not progress before the General Assembly adjourned. Similar legislation stalled in 2013.
In 2010, the Jobs Project proposed and helped design Put Illinois to Work, a subsidized state-run program that employed more than 27,300 people over nine months. Funded with federal stimulus and state grants, Put Illinois to Work was developed by CCH in partnership with several state and non-profit agencies, including the Illinois Department of Human Services.
CCH proposed Put Illinois to Work based on a national model it had advocated in partnership with the Center for Community Change in Washington, D.C. Put Illinois to Work employed low-income parents and youth in $10-an-hour jobs for 30 to 40 hours per week.
For more information about the Jobs Project, contact Organizer Jim Picchetti at (312) 641-4140.
Photo by Betsy Neely, Avalanche in B Photography