SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — As the “Chamber of Commerce” representing the nonprofit sector in California, the California Association of Nonprofits (CalNonprofits) today announced its support for increases to the minimum wage. California’s nonprofit community has multiple interests in the issue of minimum wage: as employers of one million Californians, as service providers, and as advocates for California’s working poor.
Through a survey of its members, CalNonprofits has identified as a crucial aspect of implementation the need to provide a longer phase-in schedule for nonprofits in order to provide time to re-negotiate government contracts that reimburse at minimum wage levels, allowing nonprofits to maintain delivery of critical human services.
As minimum wage proposals are developed, CalNonprofits urges policymakers to work with the nonprofit sector to ensure that:
• minimum wage increases do not fall short of adequately compensating families who may become disqualified for public benefits (such as SSI or Section 8 Housing).
• local governments work collaboratively with California’s nonprofits to obtain additional state and federal funding to cover the costs of mandated wage increases.
“Minimum wage increases help the working poor,” said Ashley McCumber, CalNonprofits board chair and CEO of Meals on Wheels of San Francisco. “Nonprofit leaders are committed to helping the working poor through minimum wage increases as well as through programs and services.”
“Opponents of minimum wage increases often try to use to nonprofits as a ‘front man,’ added CalNonprofits CEO Jan Masaoka. “In fact, our members not only support increased minimum wages, but are eager to work with city and state officials on both legislation and implementation.”
CalNonprofits sent an online survey to its member organizations, and collected responses from November 12-30, 2014. Organizations were asked to respond to eight questions, including multiple-choice and opened ended questions.
In all, 329 California nonprofit organizations responded to the survey. Of these, 83 reported having one or more employees paid at minimum wage, with these indicating they have an average of 11 percent of staff at that level.