Link

Social

Embed

Download

Download
Download Transcript


[Rally for Austin Living Wage Increase News Conference]

[00:00:24]

ALL RIGHT.

GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE.

SO MUCH FOR JOINING US AT CITY HALL.

FIRST, I WANT TO JUST GIVE A FEW REMARKS TO START US OFF AND THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR MAKING TIME TO JOIN US THIS MORNING.

IT IS NO SECRET THAT WE ARE FACING AN AFFORDABILITY CRISIS IN AUSTIN, AS COSTS CONTINUE TO RISE, INCLUDING THE VERY PEOPLE WHO SERVE THIS CITY.

IT IS TIME TO TAKE SUBSTANTIAL ACTION AND MEET THE MOMENT TO MATCH THE SCALE OF THE CRISIS.

QUITE FRANKLY, ONE OF THE WAYS THAT WE CAN ENACT CHANGE TODAY IS BY INCREASING WAGES FOR THOUSANDS OF CITY EMPLOYEES, LIVING WAY TO BRING US BACK TO BASICS AND PROVIDE US.

AND I TOOK THE GOVERNMENT THAT WORKS FOR ALL OF US, A GOVERNMENT THAT PROVIDES THOSE SERVICES IN A CITY WITH RELIABLE, CONSISTENT HIGH QUALITY SERVICES.

AND ONE THAT ENABLES OUR REPS TO LIVE IN THIS CITY THAT THEY SERVE.

IT'S THE WORKERS WHO PAY THE STREETS, MANAGE OUR PARKS, KEEP OUR CHILDREN SAFE WHILE CROSSING THE STREETS AND SO MUCH MORE.

AND THE LEAST WE CAN DO IS TO PAY THEM THEIR WE ARE AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL.

WE ARE BEING PRESENTED WITH A GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY TO REINVEST IN OUR COMMUNITIES, IMPROVE THAT WE'RE LISTENING TO THOSE WHO ARE KEEPING THEM CITY RUNNING AND CHANCE TO PROVIDE WORKERS WITH THE HIGHEST LIVING WAGE IN THIS COUNTRY.

WE HAVE A CHANCE TO APPLY.

AUSTIN IS BASIC DIGNITY THAT THEY DESERVE, BUT TO BE CLEAR, THE INCREASE WON'T MAGICALLY SOLVE ALL OF AUSTIN'S PROBLEMS. THIS IS JUST ONE STEP IN OUR JOURNEY TO MAKE THIS A FAMILY FRIENDLY CITY THAT WAS STRIVING TO BE.

IN OTHER WORDS, WE'RE JUST GETTING STARTED.

I LIKE TO GIVE A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO THE UNIONS OR WORKERS, ADVOCATES, AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS WERE PUSHED FOR THIS AND MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR US TO GET THIS FAR.

AND ALSO LOOK, TO GET A SHOUT OUT TO THE CO-SPONSORS ARE LIVING WAGE INCREASE, COUNCIL MEMBERS, KITCHEN THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH IN SUPPORTING THIS INITIATIVE.

THAT I'D LIKE TO PASS IT TO THE ASKING 1624 PRESIDENT.

OKAY.

RODNEY, WITH REVEREND MINETTA SKI WITH CENTRAL TEXAS NAV, I AM MOTHERING.

I'M THE RECTOR OF ST.

JOHN'S EPISCOPAL CHURCH AND THE LEADER WITH CENTRAL TEXAS INTERFACE.

YOU HAVE ALREADY HEARD, WE HAVE TO TALK OVER AND OVER THE MAIN REASONS WHY THE NEED TO INCREASE THE MINIMUM CITY MINIMUM WAGE.

WE MUST COME TOGETHER AS A COMMUNITY AND SUPPORT A CITY EMPLOYEES AND CONTRACTORS INCREASING THEIR WAGES.

NO MORE, NO MORE TASKFORCE.

THE TIME TO ACT IS NOW NOT ONE TAX DOLLARS TO SUBSIDIZE POVERTY WAGES, NOT FOR CITY EMPLOYEES, NOT FOR CONSTRUCTION WORKERS ON CITY PROJECTS OR CONTRACTS, AND NOT FROM POINTS OF COMPANIES RECEIVING TAX ABATEMENTS FROM OUR CITIES.

THE SPEAK UP FOR THOSE WHO CANNOT SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES FOR THE RIGHTS OF THE WALL OR DESTITUTE, SPEAK UP.

AND JUDGE WHITENING DEFEND THE RIGHTS OF THE COURT IN THE MEETING.

WE HAVE SPOKEN.

NOW IT IS TIME FOR THE MEMBERS TO ACT.

WE CALL ON YOU TO ACT TODAY AND STAND STANDARD.

THE LOWEST PAID WORKERS WE CALL

[00:05:01]

ON HERE TO STAND TODAY AND STANDING OF THE WORKERS THAT SERVE OUR COMMUNITY.

WE CALL ON YOU TO ACT TODAY AND OUR EMPLOYEES, AT LEAST $20 AN HOUR, WE CALL ON YOU TO ACT TODAY.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

IT'S SO EXCITING TO BE HERE TODAY.

AND I'M VERY OPTIMISTIC THAT WE'RE GOING TO GET THIS DONE, UH, IN THIS BUDGET CYCLE, UH, $20 AN HOUR, NOT A LOT OF MONEY.

IT'S NOT $800 ABOUT $40,000 A YEAR.

ONCE YOU TAKE OUT TAXES, ONCE YOU PAID RENT, ONCE YOU PAY FOR YOUR HEALTHCARE AND YOUR RETIREMENT AND CHILDCARE, IF YOU WANT A BASIC EXPENSES, THERE'S REALLY NOT A LOT LEFT.

THIS IS THE BASE LIVING WAGE.

THIS IS NOT BEING GENEROUS.

THIS IS BEING FAIR.

AUSTIN HAS LED ON ISSUES.

UH, THE OTHER DAY, UH, WE HONOR THE CITY COUNCIL MEMBER WHO HAD PASSED THE FIRST DISCRIMINATION EMPLOYMENT IN THE STATE IN THE 1970S, UH, PAST WORK, WORK, UH, WORKING CONDITION PROTECTIONS.

THIS IS IN THE SPIRIT OF WHO WE ARE AND WANT TO SUPPORT OUR WORKERS.

WE WANT TO SUPPORT WORKING CLASS PEOPLE IN THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

WE WANT AUSTIN TO BE THE LOVING CITY FOR WORKING CLASS PEOPLE.

AND THE WAY WE DO THAT IS BY PAYING FAIR AND DECENT WAGES.

AND I'M VERY EXCITED THAT THAT'S WHERE WE'RE GOING TO BE.

AND LASTLY, THIS WILL HAVE A RIPPLE EFFECT.

OTHER LOCAL GOVERNMENTS ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LOOK AT THE WAGE TO PAY THEIR BASE LEVEL EMPLOYEES.

OTHER PRIVATE COMPANIES ARE GOING TO HAVE TO LOOK AT THE WAGES THAT THEY PAY THEIR BILLS, HOPEFULLY BY MAKING THIS MOVE BY TAKING THIS STEP, WE'LL BRING WAGES FOR WORKING CLASS PEOPLE UP, NOT JUST IN AUSTIN COUNTY, BUT ACROSS THE CENTRAL TEXAS AREA.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UH, BY STRONG, UM, I ECHO THE COMMENTS OF MY COLLEAGUES.

I WANT TO THINK, ASK ME WHEN I THINK THAT THE LIVING WAGE TASK FORCE, AND THEN I WANT TO SAY, UM, ALSO, YOU KNOW, THIS HAS BEEN A FUNDAMENTAL TENANT OF MY OFFICE OVER THE YEARS, UM, ON THE COUNCIL, WE HAVE TO PAY PEOPLE AND WE HAVE TO BE FAIR.

SO THANK YOU FOR YOUR COMMENTS.

LET ME JUST SAY, IT'S VERY SIMPLE.

REALLY.

IT'S VERY SIMPLE.

IT'S ABOUT MONEY.

WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT AFFORDABILITY.

IF WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT FAIRNESS, IF WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT PEOPLE GETTING PAID FOR THE WORK THING, IT'S ABOUT WAGES, A FUNDAMENTAL CHANGE IN INCREASE IN $20 TO $20 AN HOUR, HIS COUNSELORS WERE BAD.

I SAID, THAT'S THE AMOUNT OF MONEY.

IT'S THE MINIMUM WE CAN DO.

WE HAVE TO DO THIS TODAY.

IT'S ABOUT CHOICES.

IT'S ABOUT PRIORITIES IS SOMETHING WE CAN DO AND WE SHOULD DO.

AND I LOOK FORWARD TO, UM, WORKING WITH MY COLLEAGUES TO RAISE THE WAGE TODAY TO $20 AN HOUR IN A CROWD TO STAND UP HERE WITH EVERYONE AND SUPPORT THAT AND LOOK FORWARD TO OUR CONVERSATION TODAY.

SO THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING I'M AUSTIN CITY COUNCIL MEMBER, KATHY TOVO.

I REPRESENT, UH, CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT NINE.

I'M ALSO A PROUD MEMBER OF ASSAY.

AND BEFORE THAT, A PROUD MEMBER OF TSU, CWA COMMUNICATION WORKERS, AND I'VE HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO LIVE IN AUSTIN MORE THAN 30 YEARS NOW.

AND AUSTIN, AS WE ALL KNOW, BECAUSE WE'VE MADE THE CHOICE TO BE HERE.

IT'S AN EXTRAORDINARY CITY.

AND ONE OF THE REASONS IT IS AN EXTRAORDINARY IS BECAUSE THE PEOPLE WHO WORK FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN TO OUR PARKS DEPARTMENT, TO THOSE WHO WERE FROST AND RESOURCE RECOVERY, WHO ARE THERE WEEK AFTER WEEK, REGULARLY PICKING UP OUR COMPOST AND OUR GARBAGE TO THOSE WHO MAKE SURE THAT OUR LIKES AND THE MANY, MANY OTHER CITY WORKERS THROUGHOUT OUR SYSTEM.

THESE ARE INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE STEPPED UP.

THEY'RE WORKING THEY'RE PUBLIC SERVANTS.

THEY'VE MADE

[00:10:01]

A CHOICE TO WORK WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN AS COMMUNITY, A BETTER PLACE.

AND THEY DESERVE OUR SUPPORT.

THEY DESERVE A MINIMUM $20 AN HOUR WAGE SO THAT THEY CAN SUPPORT THEIR FAMILIES AND BE, AND THRIVE HERE IN THE CITY THAT, YOU KNOW, ASK ME TO WALK THROUGH THOSE DOORS, TO THE CHAMBER TODAY, WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A LOT OF CHOICES ABOUT HOW DO I INVEST MORE DOLLARS WHERE CITY TAX DOLLARS AND THE CHOICES ARE GOING TO BE FARMED, BUT WE ARE, WE ARE IN A POSITION TO BE ABLE TO MAKE AN INVESTMENT AND WE NEED TO MAKE AN INVESTMENT IN OUR EMPLOYEES SO THAT THEY CAN THRIVE HERE IN THE CITY OF BOSTON SO THAT THEY CAN MEET THEIR OWN BASIC NEEDS.

AND SO THAT OUR CITY CAN CONTINUE TO BE THIS EXTRAORDINARY PLACE WITH A REALLY DYNAMITE WORKFORCE.

SO THANK YOU, COUNCIL MEMBERS, THANK YOU, SUPPORTERS AND STAKEHOLDERS HERE FOR ENCOURAGING ALL OF US TO DO THE RIGHT THING AND TO PAY THAT 20 .

I WANTED TO SEE, I KNOW THAT THEY'RE JUST NOW GOING THROUGH SECURITY AND OPEN UP REAL QUICK AS WE WAIT FOR UNION LEADERS TO, TO JOIN US FOR A FEW REMARKS.

ANYONE ELSE THAT WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH US TODAY? YES.

ANYONE FROM OUR LIVING WAGE TASK FORCE.

COME ON IN.

THANK YOU.

UM, MY NAME IS KEATON BAKER.

UH, I HAD DETROIT, MICHIGAN.

I LIVED IN BOSTON FOR ALMOST FOUR YEARS THAT, UH, I HAVE DEFINITELY, ESPECIALLY AFTER PANDEMIC.

I HAVE DEFINITELY SEEN AUSTIN BASICALLY, UH, BASICALLY RISE AND RISE.

AND UNFORTUNATELY, UM, WE KNOW THE REASONS IS RISING AND IF THEY BECOME OUT WITH PEOPLE BEHIND, UH, CLEARLY I HAVE A CRYSTAL COLOR.

UM, I REALLY WAS HOPING TO LIVE HERE FOR MANY, MANY YEARS, AND I THINK, BUT LIKE THAT TIME IS COMING SHORT BECAUSE, UH, UH, BASICALLY WE ARE BEING SACRIFICED IN THE CITY AND THAT IS VERY UNFAIR.

UH, I WOULD REALLY, IF ANYTHING, I WOULD LIKE TO SEE, I REALLY WANT TO SEE AWESOME COME A PLACE WHERE EVERYBODY CAN HAVE A GREAT, A GREAT LIFE AND THAT THEY'D BE ABLE TO LOOK.

AND I DO FEEL LIKE EMPTY TIME.

UM, THOSE OPPORTUNITIES WILL NOT BE MET AND THAT HAS BEEN SCARY.

AND SO IT IS IMPORTANT THAT WE HAVE, UH, UH, PEOPLE WHO RUN THE CITY ON THE SIDE AND THEY REALIZE THAT, UM, OFTEN IS AC FOR EVERYBODY.

UH, IT'S EASY BECAUSE ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS SHUT UP AND YOU'LL BE ABLE TO LIVE HERE NOW.

AND UNFORTUNATELY THAT'S AN OBSTACLE FOR EVERYBODY IN THE CITY.

SO I REALLY WANT THEM TO UNDERSTAND THAT IF YOU ARE OFTEN TO BE AT A GREAT CITY, YOU HAVE TO THINK ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE HERE, THAT PEOPLE WHO WORK HERE AND NOT JUST THE PEOPLE WHO CAN SELL OUT MILLIONS OF DOLLARS FOR A CONDO THAT YOU'RE BUILDING, THAT NOBODY'S COULD BE ABLE TO LIVE.

UM, WHETHER YOU BUILD IT TOMORROW WITHIN YOUR BUILDING TWO YEARS FROM NOW, AND IT'S JUST NOT GOING TO BE SUCCESSFUL.

UM, THEY ARE BUILDING WHAT THREE HOTELS NOW, AND THOSE ARE NOT GOING TO BE STAFF.

UH, THEY'RE FORTUNATE BECAUSE, UH, I WORK AT A HOTEL DOWNTOWN AND UNFORTUNATELY WE ARE NOT STAFFED.

SO PRETTY SURE THAT IS THE CASE FOR MANY, IF NOT ALL THE HOTELS HERE.

SO WE DO NOT THE AT THIS, UH, AT THIS PRESENT TIME, WHAT WE NEED IS, UM, WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT WE COMPARE, WE CAN HAVE A LIVING WAGE THAT WE ARE FIGHTING FOR THE 20 AND MAYBE A LITTLE BIT MORE.

UM, SO THAT WAY THAT WE WOULD BE ABLE TO COMPETE, NOT JUST WITH THE REST OF THE SEATS HERE IN TEXAS, BUT THE CITIES ALL.

UM, AND IF WE CAN BASICALLY TAKE THIS TO WHAT IT NEEDS TO BE AND TAKING IT IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION, I DO BELIEVE THAT WE DO HAVE A FIGHTING CHANCE, BUT WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT WE KEEP IT GONE.

UH, CAUSE MUST BE STOPPED.

THAT'S WHAT IT'S BEEN LIKE.

OKAY.

WE CAN DO WHATEVER.

AND, UH, WE CAN'T LET THEM DO THAT.

SO, UM, HERE AGAIN FOR THE FAIR LIVING ROOM AND SHE JUST BROUGHT THAT HER OSCAR BECAUSE OFTEN IS FOR EVERYBODY.

, WE'RE VERY EXCITED HERE, UH, WITH A COUPLE MORE SPEAKERS LEFT, I'M GOING TO NOW TOSS IT OVER TO A FEARLESS FIGHTING FOR CIVIL RIGHTS AND LABOR ISSUES.

[00:15:01]

THANK YOU ALL FOR OUR COUNCIL MEMBERS WHO HERE TO, TO STAND WITH US IN SOLIDARITY AS A TRUSTEE AND PART, WHAT CAN IN MY COMMUNITY STOP THESE COUGHING AND THIS THING TOO MANY FAMILIES ABOUT WHY THEY CANNOT ATTEND PARENT MEETINGS IS BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO STAY AT WORK.

THEY HAVE TO HAVE THREE JOBS THAT CANNOT SUPPORT THEIR CHILDREN.

AND SO, AS A RESULT, WE HAVE A LOT OF STUDENTS WHO ARE PAINTING BECAUSE THEIR PARENTS ARE SO HARD OR AT WORK OR THE TIME.

SO THIS WAY IS WAY OVERDUE AND AI WE'RE ABLE TO RAISE FROM 13 TO 16 AND NEXT YEAR I'M GOING TO PUSH THE OKAY, LAST BUT NOT LEAST.

WE HAVE THE PRESIDENT ASKED ME 16, 24, YVONNE, FLORIDA.

THANK YOU SO MUCH TODAY.

I'M PROUD TO STAND WITH OUR CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS BECAUSE THEY ARE MAKING A COMMITMENT AS PUBLIC SERVANTS TO PASS THE LIVING WAGE TO $20 AN HOUR.

WE'RE MORE PROUD THAT THIS FIGHT HAS BEEN FOR YOU.

THE WORKERS SPECIFICALLY ARE ASKING ME 16, 24 UNION MEMBERS.

WE KNOW THE CHARGE YOU LED BY TELLING US YOUR PERSONAL STORIES, YOUR EVERYDAY RESPONSIBILITIES OF TRYING TO SURVIVE FINANCIALLY IN AUSTIN, TEXAS, I COLLECTED VOTE A UNANIMOUS VOTE FOR $22 AN HOUR TAKE PLACE.

YET THE CITY MANAGER PRESENTED A BUDGET WITH ONLY 18 FOR AN INCREASE WAGE COMPROMISE ONE OF THE OUTCOME.

BUT LET'S REMIND THOSE WHO PRESENTED THAT BUDGET, THAT THE WORKERS, THE WORKERS MAY CITY OF AUSTIN RUN.

NOT ONE CITY EMPLOYEE SHOULD BE MAKING LESS THAN $20 AN HOUR, RIGHT? WINNING THE FIGHT WILL CONTINUE FOR THE WAGE YOU DESERVE BECAUSE EVERY DAY WORKERS ARE SACRIFICING THEIR VALUABLE TIME AND THEIR LABOR TO THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

THIS IS WHY WE ARE HERE.

A REMINDER OF HOW IMPERATIVE YOU ARE, THE WORST TO THIS ORGANIZATION.

WE WILL CONTINUE TO SPEAK UP.

WE WILL CONTINUE TO STAND WITH YOU, THE WORKERS, BECAUSE AS YOUR LABOR UNION PRESIDENT AND TODAY WITH THE CITY COUNCIL, WE ARE ACKNOWLEDGING YOUR WORTH.

WE 15, 24 MEMBERS ALREADY KNOW EXACTLY 3,200 UNION MEMBERS ALREADY KNOW IS THAT THEY'RE FIGHTING FOR THEIR LIVELIHOOD WILL NOT STOP HERE.

IT WILL CONTINUE ON AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO FIGHT FOR YOU.

THE WORKERS WORK AS A CITY OFFICER AND HOW TO ASK ME 1624.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

A LOT GOING ON TODAY.

A CITY COUNCIL DELIBERATES THE BUDGET.

SO I WANTED TO MAYBE BUY AFTER THIS PARTICULAR GROUP PHOTO AND THEN MEDIA COUNCIL WITH MY COLLEAGUES AND I WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR ANY ONE-ON-ONE IN IT.