The middle class is the great engine of the American economy. But today that engine is sputtering and as a result, both American families and the economy are struggling. The wages of most workers have been stuck in neutral for 30 years. More and more Americans—even those with college degrees—are toiling in jobs that do not pay enough to support their families in dignity and offer hope of a brighter future. And the jobs that will grow the most in the next decade are low wage, stripped ofbenefits and requiring no more than a high school diploma. Unless our nation focuses on making today’s jobs better and tomorrow’s jobs good, the long-term prospects for our families’ well-being and the national economy are bleak.
10 Ways to Rebuild the Middle Class for Hard Working Americans: Making Work Pay in the 21st Century lays out a road map for this u-turn. We describe common sense policies towards making today’s jobs better and tomorrow’s jobs good. The core value guiding this road map is that work lies at the center of a robust and sustainable economy; that all work has dignity; and that through work, all ofus should be able to support our families, educate our children and enjoy our retirements.