JACKSON, Miss. – Teachers, corrections workers, and others employed by the state of Mississippi are some of the lowest paid state workers in the nation. That was the message from Moral Movement Mississippi at the state capitol Tuesday. They are asking lawmakers to give those employees a raise.
According to President of the Mississippi Alliance of State Employees Brenda Scott, state employees are paid on an average $9,000 dollar less than employees who do the same jobs in surrounding states. “I’m not asking for a $5,000 raise, but something to show public workers that they are appreciated. Unless we do that we are going to continue to lose them to other states and lose money training. – we are talking corrections officer starting at $22,000 dollars a day, poverty wages.”
To others, like Tyson Jackson, Organizer with Communication workers of America. Employee pay raises are a moral issue. “The state employee pay raise is a moral issue because it effects all of us across the board. No matter what you do, if you are citizen of the state of Mississippi you have to have some interaction with a state employee. – If their quality of life is not great, how is that going to affect us?”
According to Jackson, Moral Movement Mississippi will continue to protest each week of the 2015 legislative session. Medicaid expansion and education are other issues they plan to address.