There are so many ways that the economy is rigged against women and families and I have seen the impacts first-hand.

A few years ago, I was a single mom struggling to make ends meet, making slightly more than the minimum wage ($8 per hour) and trying to support myself and my 6-year-old after my marriage failed.

My son and I were on food stamps and MaineCare, even though I was working full time. No matter how hard I tried to find appropriate housing, there was no way I could afford $900-$1,000 a month for rent.

I had a car payment for a car that wasn’t even safe but was my only way to get to work. Even after I finally saved enough to get an apartment, it was impossible to keep up with the bills.

At one point, after being evicted, I was living in a homeless shelter while working full time to save enough to get another apartment.

I know that I am not the only one who has struggled to support my family on poverty wages. I also know that this issue affects women much more than men.

The majority of minimum-wage workers are women, many of us supporting families. Here in Maine, women still earn, on average, just 84 percent of what our male counterparts earn.

It is time for a change. In January, the Legislature will consider citizen-initiated legislation to increase Maine’s minimum wage. Lawmakers and voters should stand with Maine women and support it.

Katie Logue, Auburn

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