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Minimum Wage: A Worker's View

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Minimum Wage: A Worker's View

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Minimum Wage: A Worker's View

Minimum Wage: A Worker's View

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Gina Walter, who makes $6.25 an hour, says the proposed minimum-wage boost in January 2007 would make a difference in her daily life as a minimum-wage worker.

Ms. GINA WALTER: My name is Gina Walter. I'm 44 years old. I'm from Columbus, Ohio. And I work at the Ohio Thrift Store, and I make $6.25 cents an hour.

MICHELE NORRIS, host:

And now, a final view from someone who's very happy about an increase in the minimum wage.

Ms. WALTER: I'm a cashier, and I stock shelves, and straightened up floors and stuff. I'm one of the best doggone cashiers. The good folks of Ohio voted that our minimum wage will go up to $6.85 cents an hour. It will help because of the bills, the gasoline, gas for my apartment, electric, our sewer bills are going up this year - maybe even two or three times higher than what they normally are so that there will be more money in my bank account. So I can take care of those bills and I won't have to have - I won't have to go and get any kind of assistance, because I've never had assistance in my whole life.

This is December 13th, and to date I've made $11,000. Most of the time, my take-home pay is about $388 every two weeks. It will help me by making sure that I have at least 20 or 30, maybe even 40 more dollars in my bank account per month, so that I can make sure that I pay my bills and not get behind. And, you know, it's a good thing.

NORRIS: That was Gina Walter, a cashier in Columbus, Ohio. One of a variety of views you've been hearing about a proposal on Capitol Hill to raise the minimum wage.

You'll find a primer on the minimum wage at NPR.org.

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