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The Ordinance, among other things, requires city information and services be provided in every language that is represented by 10,000 people or more in the city at the same level that information and services are provided to English speakers. The ordinance requires the hiring of bilingual staff in public contact positions. However, the ordinance divides the implementation into two phases divided by department. The ordinance establishes an in house translation service for translating written materials and providing translation for public meetings. The ordinance requires that every department maintain a telephonic recording in every language represented by 10,000 people or more in the city contain information about the department's operations. The ordinance establishes a complaint process and a compliance plan to be completed by the City Manager each year.
The ordinance requires companies or non-profits with service contracts with the city worth at least $25,000 or benefiting from at least $100,000 in city subsidies to pay workers a minimum of $9.25 an hour; entitles workers to 12 paid days off per year; and allows collective bargaining agreements to supersede the requirements of the living wage ordinance.
This report examines the decline of Milwaukee's economy over the past 30 years and evaluates the city's current challenges including high unemployment, low job quality, extreme racial inequality, and central city economic isolation. The report recommends overcoming these challenges by strengthening the labor market's floor through policies that raise the minimum wage, expand the prevailing wage, and combat wage theft. The report also provides evidence as to how raising the minimum wage benefits both businesses and the community.