minimum wage

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Seattle is known for its endless public process, so how did it become a city where $15 went from a campaign slogan to law in a matter of months?

The law kicks in on Wednesday, when the minimum wage in Seattle rises to $11 an hour. It’s the first phase of several years of planned increases eventually leading to a $15-an-hour minimum wage.  

Christina Rodriguez, 25, was one of dozens of fast food workers who walked off the job during fast food in Seattle strikes in 2013.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

Bill Radke talks with political consultants Sandeep Kaushik and Chris Vance about whether voters should ultimately decide whether to raise Washington state's minimum wage.

University of Washington's Suzzallo Library.
Flickr Photo/Curtis Cronn (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Ross Reynolds talks with University of Washington spokesperson Norm Arkans about Seattle's $15 minimum wage and why the UW is not ready to commit to it. 

Editor’s note: KUOW is a self-sustaining service of the University of Washington. The university’s Board of Regents holds our license. Arkans is a member of the KUOW Board of Directors.   

Eighteen-year-old Alicia Donaldson works at a busy McDonald's in East Oakland. Her job is more complicated than anyone might think.

"When you do the grill and the chicken by yourself, it's not easy," she admits. "You have to put down the meat on the grill, and then put chicken in the grease. People get burned a lot."

That's a lot of pain for only $9 an hour. Today it's still hard work, but now Alicia is making $12.25 instead.

"When I worked 56 hours my check was about $480," she remembers.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

A lawsuit against Seattle’s new $15 an hour minimum wage has failed its first test in court.

Lawyers for the International Franchise Association (IFA) and five local franchisees have sued the city, arguing the law discriminates against franchise businesses.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Researchers from the University of Washington and the state are hoping cold, hard data can help settle the heated debate over the costs and benefits of raising the minimum wage in Seattle.

This Week's News Calls For New Leadership

Mar 13, 2015
File Photo: Kathleen O'Toole speaks after being introduced by Seattle Mayor Ed Murray as his nominee to be Seattle's new Chief of Police, May 19, 2014.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Is a shakeup of the Seattle Police Department’s top ranks a sign of progress? Should a franchise be considered big business when it comes to Seattle's $15 minimum wage law? And is there hope for Seahawks fans soaked by Super Bowl ticket scammers?

Luke Burbank steps in for KUOW's Bill Radke to make sense of those stories and more of the week's news with Seattle Channel's Joni Balter, Crosscut's Knute Berger and Eli Sanders of The Stranger.

Workers and labor activists demonstrate outside the US District Courthouse in support of the city's $15 an hour minimum wage
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Lawyers for the International Franchise Association and five local franchisees were in court Tuesday asking that portions of Seattle’s new $15-an-hour minimum wage law be barred from taking effect.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Lawyers for the city of Seattle will be in federal court Tuesday to defend the city’s new $15-an-hour minimum wage law.

Democrats in the Washington state House have passed a $12 per hour minimum wage measure. The increase would phase-in over four years.

The Washington House is expected to vote this week on a $12 per hour minimum wage.

A panel in the Idaho Senate introduced a bill that would increase the state’s minimum wage to $9.25 an hour -- a $2 per hour increase -- by next year. 

health flu shot
Flickr Photo/Government of Alberta (CC-BY-NC-ND)

The same question goes for non-vaccinating parents: What’s the right strategy? Also: yet another questionable fatal police shooting, this time in our state. And what will politics be like without comedic news anchors John Stewart and Stephen Colbert? Finally, Seattle has a new earthquake alert, what will you do with your five seconds?

Bill Radke analyzes the week’s news with Luke Burbank, Joni Balter and Knute Berger.

Note to our podcasters: The team also discussed the possible resignation of Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber. He formally announced his resignation after the show aired. 

Demonstrators in Seattle form a human chain around City Hall in support of a $15 minimum wage in April 2014.
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Marcie Sillman talks with Seattle City Councilmember Mike O'Brien about the potential impact of the $15 minimum wage on Seattle's manufacturing sector.

Marcie Sillman talks with Washington state Sen. Michael Baumgartner, R-Spokane, about his proposal to offer the federal minimum wage as opposed to the higher state minimum wage for newly employed teens working in the summer months.

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