In Manhattan, after factoring in cost of living, the city's mandated $8-an-hour minimum wage is actually more like $3.63 an hour. A similar struggle befalls low wage workers in other high cost urban centers such as Honolulu. Instead, head to the Midwest or Pacific Northwest cities like Spokane for more buying power from the low wage dollar. With more states taking on the minimum wage fight (at the federal level, the minimum wage remains a non-starter), it's worth paying attention to how proposed small increases translate into actual buying power for men and women and their families.
Connecticut as of yesterday will offer the highest minimum wage in the country at $10.10 an hour up from $8.70. More money is always good. But then comes the question, is it still enough to both buy milk and pay rent in New Haven or Stamford? -- Maybe it's time to talk more about a living wage instead of a minimum one.
Find out the real stretch of your state's minimum wage dollar, here.