Miami, FL—SEIU Florida President Monica Russo issued the following statement in response to Governor Scott’s State of the State:
“It comes as no surprise that Governor Rick Scott and the Republican-led Legislature have a jam-packed agenda that attacks hardworking Floridians rather than doing their sworn job to protect the interests of our most vulnerable.
“The solutions are there, but Gov. Scott and Republican legislators are choosing to pass laws that harm working Floridians instead of protecting them, like proposing a $770 million tax-cut for big business while shifting the burden on the people.
“Enough is enough. Instead of addressing the real issues that affect the lives of millions of hardworking Floridians, like increasing the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour and expanding access to affordable health care to protect more families from falling into poverty, Scott and Republican legislators are giving priority to growing corporate welfare for big business at the expense of taxpayers, separating families and criminalizing immigrant workers who put food on our tables and shape our cities' skyline and denying State workers the ability to collectively bargain -- one of the simplest examples of democracy.
“Too many hardworking Floridians don’t earn enough to support their families because they are underpaid and underappreciated. It’s time for our politicians to rise to the occasion and raise the minimum wage to at least $15 an hour. If Rick Scott and the Republican legislators choose the path of boosting corporate welfare, hardworking Floridians, of which 52% live in poverty or earn less than $15 an hour, have more incentive than ever to vote for candidates who will cut off the funnel of money that continues to subsidize some of the state’s largest corporations and invest that money on the real economic engine – working Floridians.
“More than 4 million Floridians would benefit from raising the minimum wage to $15, and a vast majority of underpaid Floridians are voters. It is time for Florida legislators to step up to the plate and support underpaid Floridians struggling to make ends meet, or get out of the way.”