TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - A host of liberal-leaning groups, calling themselves the Florida Poor People's Campaign, gathered at the state capitol to address issues such as poverty and racism.
They are calling on the Republican-dominated legislature to take action on issues such as an increased minimum wage, additional funding for traditional public schools, and an expansion of the government-run medicaid program to include more low-wage residents.
The group says a significant number of Floridians are among the working poor, who are struggling paycheck to paycheck, and just one major incident away from not being able to pay their bills.
Lobbyist Karen Woodall says the overall economic growth in Florida over the past decade has not been noticed by a majority of the state's workforce.
"Florida's economy, as you know, is based on low-income, low wage, no benefit jobs," said Woodall, who works with the Florida Center for Fiscal and Economic Police. "It's the retail industry. It's the tourism industry. It's the agriculture industry."
The Poor People's Campaign is supporting one bill scheduled to be heard in a senate committee Tuesday which would, in part, ask congress to reform the tax structure, by closing many current loopholes and simplifying tax returns.