Saru Jayaraman, the founder of the union-funded Restaurant Opportunities Center United that has lobbied heavily for the “Fight for 15,” which seeks to increase the federal minimum wage to $15, was caught on camera saying that she believed proposed wage hike was actually too low for workers to live on and advocating that the wage be raised another $2 to $6 more.
In an April 28 video posted to YouTube Wednesday, Jayaraman can be seen addressing a small group of people in North Carolina and discussing California’s recent minimum wage increase to the historic high of $15 per hour. Though her organization has joined the call for the $15 wage, Jayaraman indicated in the video clip that the group has no intentions of stopping there.
“If you are taking into account child care and transportation and everything that people need to live, you are talking much higher — $17, $21,” Jayamaran can be heard saying in the clip. “So $15 is not a livable wage, and I don’t think anyone — I hope no one — is claiming that it is. I wouldn’t think that it is even here in North Carolina.”
The video clip, which was published by the conservative America Rising Squared, also shows Jayamaran saying that she determined her new numbers from a wage calculator from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s website.