Just Economics Mid-Year Update

The first half of 2024 was filled with a lot of advocacy, education, and organizing. We are so proud of the work we have done together with our members, committees, and teams.

So far in 2024, Just Economics has…

  • Welcome a new staff member–Sam Stites–as our Living Wage Program Coordinator
  • Brought on 4 new board members-David Bartholomew, Annelise Hagedorn, Su Shen Huang, and Ela Twigg
  • Launched a new Living Wage Champions Campaign in Henderson County
  • Hosted another great year of Just Brew It!

As part of our Policy Advocacy work, so far this year we…

  • Successfully advocated for higher wages for the lowest paid workers at the City of Asheville
  • Worked in solidarity with firefighters to advocate for higher wages for lowest paid firefighters

Through our Grassroots Education and Engagement we… 

  • Graduated another virtual class of Voices for Economic Justice!
  • Facilitated 4 Poverty Simulations

With our Living Wage Certification program we…

  • Certified 21 employer new to the Living Wage Certification program
  • Had a $1.1 million impact with wage raises given to meet our living wage standards during certification and recertification
  • Hosted an employer networking event and led the national Living Wage Network

This year, the Affordable Housing Strategy Team also…

  • Co-led the newly formed Buncombe Affordable Housing Network
  • Engaged in the City of Asheville Affordable Housing Plan
  • Hosted Affordable Housing Advocacy 101 workshops

We lead the WNC Tenants Network and this year we…

  • Joined the NC Tenants Union
  • Co-facilitated Tenants Rights Workshops with Pisgah Legal

Our Better Buses Together group successfully worked to…

  • Hosted a Spring Transit Riders’ Assemblies
  • Led Asheville Regional Transit Coalitions work to advocate for increased frequency to South Asheville and gain better understanding of microtransit

Just Economics is the convener for the WNC Workers’ Assembly, which…

  • Took the lead in organizing a May Day rally
  • Joined in solidarity actions supporting local union efforts 
  • Completed study with partners at UNCA/UNC Gillings on Hospitality Worker Health and Wellbeing

Our affiliate, the Living Wage Coalition of Transylvania County…

  • Newly certified 4 employers new to our program paying a Living Wage and recertified the existing list of Living Wage employers in Transylvania County, bringing our total to over 75
  • Grew our coalition and initiated a new communications team
  • Advocated to Transylvania County for Living Wages and a Paid Family Leave policy through public comment, meetings, and an op-ed

We look forward to a lot more successes and community building in the second half of 2024!

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