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My family couldn't survive on $7.25 minimum wage. But $15 gives us a fighting chance.

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Watching politicians and pundits debate whether to raise the minimum wage to $15, I sometimes wonder what planet they’re on. Their arguments fixate on everything from the political process to abstract economic theories.   

But for workers like me, what they’re really voting on is whether they think we deserve to survive.  

As a boy growing up in Guyana, I fantasized about moving to the United States and pursuing the American dream.. At the age of 35, I finally made good on my goal of moving to the land of opportunity. 

But it didn’t work out the way I had expected. 

Back in Guyana, I was one of 14 children. Yet, while my dad was the sole breadwinner in the family, we always had enough for a roof over our heads and food on the table. When I grew up, I started my own lumber business, and never had to worry about things like wages, since I was my own boss. 

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