Minimum Wage

Minimum Wage Local Control in Colorado
Low-wage workers are falling further behind – full-time minimum wage workers can’t earn enough to support their families because the wage has not nearly kept pace with the cost of living.
Current Minimum Wage is Not Enough to Survive On:
  • Minimum wage workers live in poverty.
  • Minimum wage was created to keep working families out poverty but it hasn’t kept up with the rising cost of living–and buying power has dropped massively over 50 years.
  • For the first 30 years, minimum wage provided an adequate floor for wages and grew at the same pace as productivity. In 1968, it was equal to ½ of what the average production worker made.
  • Minimum wage value has eroded and the wage gap has grown significantly. Today, a minimum wage worker in Colorado only makes about 1/3 of the average wage.
  • Minimum wage is not enough to live on.
  • A full-time minimum wage worker takes home less than $300/week.


In November of 2016, COPA led a huge victory, winning Amendment 70 to increase the minimum wage to $12 by 2020. While this was a significant step, we know that communities across our state are struggling to keep up with the rapidly rising costs of living. $12 isn’t enough in different parts of Colorado.

Currently, cities are not allowed to raise their own minimum wages higher than the state’s level, even though there are several cities in Colorado where workers need more than $12 to survive. COPA, in collaboration with other organizations, is working on legislation that would allow cities to set their own wages, while ensuring that the state’s $12 minimum wage is not undercut anywhere.

For more information, or to get involved, contact Robel at or (720) 593-9863