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Portland, ME Green Party announces ballot initiative campaign for $15/hour minimum wage

Greens campaign for $15/hour minimum wage in Portland, ME.

From the Portland Press Herald:

Portland Greens, meanwhile, are “dismayed” that Brennan’s proposed minimum wage would still make it difficult for people to afford to live in Portland, according to a press release.

The Greens are seeking to establish a so-called living wage of $15 an hour through a citywide referendum. They argue a livable wage will lead to economic growth, rather than job losses, because more money will be flowing through the local economy.

The Greens, which spearheaded a successful referendum in 2013 in support of legalizing recreational use of marijuana, will meet at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 11, in Room 24 at City Hall to finalize the details of their planned referendum.

And more from the Maine Independent Green Party:

The Portland Green Independent Committee will soon begin the process to create a living wage of $15 an hour for Portland workers via a citizens’ initiative.

Dismayed that the Mayor’s proposal for increasing the minimum wage will still leave many unable to participate in our economy and unable to afford the city’s skyrocketing cost of living, the Greens’ ordinance will create a true living wage for Portland’s working people.

A higher minimum wage will not result in fewer jobs, but instead facilitate more money flowing through the local community, leading to job growth and an improved economy, as has happened in other parts of the country where minimum wage increases have passed.

There are currently two working proposals that approach the way in which this wage increase will be applied. There will be a meeting in room 24 at city hall, Wednesday, March 11th at 5:30, where the PGIC will finalize the details. Public and Press are welcome to attend.

If you are interested in volunteering for this campaign, please sign up at


One Comment

  1. Michael Anthony Michael Anthony March 8, 2015

    The greens are not beginning this process, they have hijacked it from a broader community group that was working on it since last year. We had plans of working with the greens this year, but they have went ahead and hijacked the local movement for their own agenda.

    As a movement theorist, and a green party member, I am very critical about how we build movements, and the role that organizations I’m a part of, especially partisan organizations, have in those movements. 15 Now Maine in my opinion should remain independent, and broad based, not tied down to any partisan agenda.

    The debates at the green party meeting revolved around green party leaders like Tom Mcmillan wanting to get credit for the organizing, despite blatantly not having a problem with not giving credit to the broader group that has been organizing this effort since last year.

    The green party has core values that are designed to prevent the party from co-opting popular struggles like 15 Now! “decentralization” and “grassroots democracy” were hard wired into the party since its development, by people who were critical of politics role in popular movements, and concerned that the greens would just become corrupted by the political process, and loose touch with their grassroots foundation, just using grassroots rhetoric as a faux-populous propaganda front, to secure loyal support of an otherwise underrepresented radical/leftist/anticapitalist/environmentalist bloc, while sucking energy out of these movements, for the sake of party growth and power.

    As a green party member, and a 15 Now! organizer, I reject the green parties co-option of the local manifestation of this national movement. Organizations cannot claim ownserhip of movements like these. The role of organizations is more limitting than beneficial, as it stifles broad based decentralized grassroots support from developing organically. There is a highly centralized power structure of the current portland greens though, and they have successfully created a culture that stifles genuine internal debate, even to the point of censoring those who disagree with their plans.

    Please support this effort, but do not confuse it for the green parties ideas. they have taken this, and stolen the work of others. its important that it gets done, but its also important portland workers, ALL of portlands workers, not just a few self selected green partiers, who claim to represent workers, take ownership of this movement.

    Solidarity pays!

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