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Should New York have a statewide minimum wage?

A smiling man with short dark hair wearing a blue button-down shirt and a grey blazer. He is holding a pair of eyeglasses. The word "Connections" appears on the left side of the photo in vertical letters.

A new proposed bill in the New York State Legislature calls for a statewide minimum wage.

If passed, the Upstate Parity and Minimum Wage Protection Act would establish a statewide minimum wage floor of $17 per hour by the year 2026. Current law sets two separate minimum wages for upstate New York and downstate; as of January 1, minimum wage in New York City and some of its suburbs is $16 per hour, while in the rest of the state, the rate is $15 per hour.

Advocates for the proposed legislation say the current law leaves upstate workers behind. Those who oppose the bill say it doesn’t make economic sense. We explore the issue from various perspectives.

Our guests:

Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.