Efforts to raise Minnesota's minimum wage have generated a lot of heat at the Capitol but who earns the minimum?

  • According to the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, 5.2 percent of hourly workers, or 83,000, were paid the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour or less between 2012 and 2013. Adding in salaried workers, about 114,000 earned minimum wage or less.
  • The state found that minimum wage workers were more likely to be women than men. "Among female hourly workers, 6.0 percent earned the minimum wage or less, compared with 4. 4 percent of men."
  • Many minimum wage workers serve food and drink: "About 47 percent of all hourly workers paid the minimum or less were in eating and drinking places." More than half of those minimum or below minimum wage workers get tips.
  • About a third of minimum wage workers are younger than 19 years old.
  • Most minimum wage workers are unmarried. About 20 percent are married.

Here's a chart of who earns minimum wage or less in Minnesota, by industry:

Here's a chart of who earns minimum wage or less in Minnesota, by age:

Note: The Minnesota minimum wage is $6.15 an hour for large businesses. Since 2009, the federal minimum wage has been set at $7.25 an hour. That means that most Minnesota employers have to pay the federal minimum to their workers.

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