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Clackamas Workforce Partnership

Oregon's Minimum Wage Jobs: Facts, Figures and Context

Oregon's Minimum Wage Jobs: Facts, Figures and Context - February 2016

Executive Summary

➣ Oregon’s 2016 minimum wage is $9.25 per hour. The minimumwage is adjusted annually to account for inflation.

➣ The national minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. It was last increased in 2009.

➣ Oregon’s 2016 minimum wage is the eighth highest state minimum. Oregon had the second highest minimum wage in the nation for years, behind Washington State, but that changed in 2016.

➣ The purchasing power of Oregon’s minimum wage today is similar to the purchasing power of the minimum wage in the late-1970s, while nationally the minimum wage has lost purchasing power.

➣ Almost two-thirds of minimum wage workers are women. Minimum wage workers tend to be young and most do not have a college degree.

➣ Five percent of Oregon workers in 2015 worked at or below the minimum wage of $9.25.

➣ Two out of every five Oregon jobs pay less than $15.00 per hour and could potentially be affected by one or more of the minimum wage adjustments currently under debate.

➣ Low-wage jobs are concentrated in food service, retail, recreational, and office occupations and in the leisure and hospitality, retail, and natural resource industries.

➣ Low-wage employment makes up differing shares of employment in local areas of Oregon. Therefore, the impact of increases in the minimum wage would vary by location.

➣ Studies have found that moderate increases in the minimum wage substantially increase the earnings of those at the bottom of the income distribution and reduce wage inequality. Negative employment effects of such policies are too small to have meaningful consequences for public policy.

➣ The effects of large increases in the minimum wage are untested.

Posted on February 1, 2016.

About Clackamas Workforce Partnership

Clackamas Workforce Partnership, formerly known as Workforce Investment Council of Clackamas County, is a nonprofit organization which serves as an advocate for workforce development within Clackamas County and the State of Oregon. Our mission is to address critical workforce, educational, and training challenges, and develop a skilled workforce that meets the needs of businesses and strengthens the local economy of Clackamas County. Learn more about us.