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NY minimum wage rises; $10.50 an hour for fast food workers

People march in the street during a protest

People march in the street during a protest near a McDonald's restaurant as part of a nationwide effort to raise the minimum wage to 15 US dollar per hour in Harlem on Nov. 10, 2015. Photo Credit: EPA / JUSTIN LANE

The state’s minimum wage went up starting Thursday for employees of various industries, particularly those working in fast food establishments.

New York’s new minimum wage rate is now $9 an hour for all workers, a 25-cent raise from the previous rate. As part of a recommendation from the state’s wage board, fast food workers in New York City will have a $10.50 an hour rate. Tipped hospitality employees, such as those who work in restaurants, hotels and other services, will have a minimum wage of $7.50 an hour, which in some cases is nearly a $3 increase from their previous rate.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has been advocating for a $15 an hour minimum wage statewide, said the changes will make a “fundamental difference” for thousands of New Yorkers and the state’s economy as a whole.

“No one who works full time should ever be condemned to a life of poverty,” he said in a statement.

The increases for fast food workers are part of an annual rise in the minimum wage that will result in a $15 an hour rate on Dec. 31, 2018.

The minimum wage rate has been a hot topic around the country as elected officials and workers’ rights groups protest for better working conditions and salaries.

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