'The Equality Of Opportunity'

Aug 26, 2014

A new report asserts Montana's minimum wage of $7.80 an hour isn't nearly enough to cover day-to-day needs, much less student loans, credit card and medical debt.

In fact, the "Families Out of Balance" report maintains a minimum wage is barely over half of what a single adult needs to make ends meet.

(Left to Right): Emily Likins, Sean McQuillan, Sue Malek, Gail Gutsche.
Credit Edward O'Brien

The report, released today by the Montana Organizing Project in conjunction with the Alliance for a Just Society says a "living wage" would help working families transition from debt to stability.

The Project defines a living wage as one ranging from $14.40 cents an hour for a single adult to $25.82 cents for a single adult with two children.

The Montana Organizing Project held a press conference to discuss some of these issues. The speakers included: Missoula City Councilwoman Caitlin Copple, local pizza shop employee Emily Likins, MOP Director, Gail Gutsche, University of Montana senior, Sean McQuillan and state senator Sue Malek. They all sat down to speak with Edward O'Brien. 

Malek says Medicaid expansion in Montana would be critically important from both a health and financial perspective: