Washington Governor Jay Inslee has endorsed a proposed ballot measure that would raise the state minimum wage and require employers to provide paid sick leave. The Democrat used his state of the state address Tuesday to pledge his support for the measure filed this week.
“If you work 40 hours a week, you deserve a wage that puts a roof over your head and food on the table. Period. And you shouldn’t have to give up a day’s pay if you or your kids get sick,” Inslee said.
Inslee has previously used his state of the state address to call on the legislature to raise the minimum wage and enact a paid sick leave law. Republican leaders argue minimum wage is an issue that divides urban Washington from rural communities. State Senator Linda Evans Parlette represents Wenatchee.
“There’s a big difference in downtown Seattle, downtown Tacoma where most of the Democrats come from, so it’s not even an issue of discussion where I live,” Parlette said.
Inslee also used his state of the state address to call for a hike in teacher salaries, more funding for mental health, a plan to fully fund public schools and money to cover last summer’s forest fires.
Copyright 2016 Northwest News Network.