America is supposed to be the land of opportunity, a country where hard work and playing by the rules would provide working families a middle-class standard of living. But in recent decades, corporate CEOs have been taking a greater share of the economic pie while workers’ wages have stagnated.
In 2014, CEOs of the S&P 500 Index companies received, on average, $13.5 million in total compensation—an increase of 15.6% from the previous year—according to the AFL-CIO’s analysis of available data.
Today’s CEO-to-worker pay ratios are simply unconscionable. While CEO pay is stratospheric, production and nonsupervisory workers took home only $36,134 on average in 2014, and a full-time worker making the federal minimum wage earned only $15,080.
It doesn't have to be this way. Lawmakers should raise the minimum wage and protect U.S. workers by not engaging in bad trade deals. Corporations should pay their employees a living wage. And workers should have a collective voice on the job to demand their fair share.