Report: MD Working Families Still Struggling

Friday, February 7, 2014

(Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO)

Working families in Maryland continue to struggle to move ahead in an uncertain economy. That’s the central finding in a new report released yesterday by the Progressive Maryland Education Fund and Maryland Center on Economic Policy, "The State of Working Maryland 2013". Nearly 600,000 Marylanders still live in poverty, despite the state’s 10 percent poverty rate being significantly lower than the national rate of 15.7 percent. And while union membership is associated with higher wages for workers, union membership is steadily declining in Maryland, as it is across the nation. Housing affordability remains a challenge for Maryland, as is unmanageable student debt and the high cost of energy. “There’s no doubt that some of the findings in the State of Working Maryland 2013 are sobering,” says Progressive Maryland Education Fund Executive Director Kate Planco Waybright. “But there are policy options that our leaders can take right away to correct the most troublesome findings. The General Assembly should pass reforms that build Maryland’s middle class, such as policies that increase access to union membership in Maryland and raise the minimum wage.”


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