Chicago's minimum wage will go up gradually to $13 an hour by 2019 under a mayor-backed plan that cleared the full city council by a 44-5 vote at a special meeting Tuesday. Progress Illinois provides highlights from the council debate and vote.
The following is from the Jane Addams Senior Caucus.
Over three hundred senior citizens, their allies and aldermen gathered at Daley Plaza Tuesday to dramatically protest the housing and economic policies supported by Mayor Emanuel, which are having disastrous impact on struggling families and seniors.
The message chanted at the Rally was “What do we want? $15 Now! What do we want? CHA Housing Justice!”
Shatara Uhunmwangho, leader of Chicago Housing Initiative who is homeless said, “I made the decision to participate in the political theater and rally because I am a mother, I am a worker and I am on the waiting list for the Chicago Housing Authority. Affordable housing is an issue for my family. My daughter and I need a stable and affordable place to live. This year, the city council has the opportunity to vote on two important issues that would transform the lives of thousands and thousands of families – the Keeping the Promise Ordinance and $15 Minimum Wage for Chicago Ordinance.”
Chicagoans protested at Mayor Rahm Emanuel's office Thursday morning for corporate tax transparency.
At City Hall, activists with the regional community advocacy group IIRON urged Emanuel to support a long-pending ordinance that would require all publicly-traded corporations seeking subsidies or contracts from the city to publicly disclose the amount they pay in Illinois income taxes and any tax breaks they receive.
"Resources have been cut, and cut again, as we are told that we are in a 'budget crisis,'" said IIRON member Maria Alicia Ibarra of Bridgeport's First Lutheran Church of the Trinity. "At the same time, it is not clear (whether) corporations making record profits are paying their fair share to the common good ... Show us the money. Give us transparency."
The Chicago City Council's Progressive Reform Caucus has joined the call for an end to the interest-rate swap agreements the city and Chicago Public Schools have with banks and private investment firms, including Bank of America and Loop Capital.
Chicago fast food workers escalated their fight on Thursday for a $15 hourly wage and union rights by participating in acts of civil disobedience during a nationwide day of strikes. Progress Illinois was there for today's protests.
Chicago Ald. Bob Fioretti (2nd) says a property tax hike appears to be on the horizon by the looks of a survey sent to aldermanic candidates by a new super PAC formed to support Mayor Rahm Emanuel's re-election.