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ASU on-campus workers exempt from Proposition 206

Students share thoughts on ASU being exception to increased minimum wage.

library workers

On-campus workers at the library information desk at University Center in ASU's Downtown Phoenix campus on Jan. 18, 2017.

The Arizona Minimum Wage and Paid Time Off Initiative or Proposition 206 went into effect on Jan. 1 of this year. However, the increased minimum wage doesn’t apply to ASU students working on-campus jobs, according to a university statement.

“Prop. 206, as passed by the voters of Arizona, exempts entities like ASU from the adjustments to the minimum wage,” the university statement read. 

The statement also said ASU was still a top employer because of their benefits such as schedule flexibility.

Secondary education freshman Isabella Anzaldua just started working for the athletic department as a computer lab monitor. She said she makes $8.05 per hour which is the standard minimum wage before the increase induced by Prop. 206.

“Honestly, it doesn’t bother me that much because if it had gone up this semester, my hours would have been cut more,” Anzaldua said.

Anzaldua said she never backed the minimum wage increase to begin with.

“I didn’t think that the minimum wage increase was necessarily a good idea just because prices were going to increase everywhere,” Anzaldua said. “But I’m comfortable with my salary even though I just started and everything."

Because Anzaldua is in college, she said doesn't think she needs the wage increase and that $2 won't make much of a difference. 

“I think it will definitely be an adjustment just because I feel like people’s hours are going to be cut because of it,” Anzaldua said. “But who knows what will happen? I’m sure it can’t be that bad.”

Anzaldua said she didn’t get the job solely for the money. She also said her mother had an on-campus job when she was in school and encouraged her to do the same.

“It’s a great way to build my resume while in college and make connections and get basic work experience for when I actually have to go and find a job after I graduate,” Anzaldua said.

Emily Mushaben, design management junior, works at the Sun Devil Fitness Complex at the information desk on Tempe campus and said money is very important to her.

“I just needed money because of bills, groceries, things like that,” Mushaben said. “I always need money.”

She said she isn’t bothered by ASU being exempt from Prop. 206 because the daily cost of living for college students isn’t very high.

However, she also said the extra $2 would help.

“It would help me stay at my job because I’m looking for a different job because I don’t get paid enough there,” Mushaben said. “I’m just looking for more money because I’m graduating soon.”

She said many people would be more attracted to working on campus if they were getting paid more.

However, some on-campus jobs connected to outside chains will observe the new raised minimum wage. 

For example, the downtown Sun Devil Fitness Complex — which has a connection to Phoenix's Valley of the Sun YMCA — will be offering its workers $10 per hour, according to Logan Christensen, an exercise and wellness freshman. 

She is a lifeguard at the downtown SDFC and said that she got the job because it was convenient being only a four-minute walk across the road. 

“I have to pay for school, so I’m starting to save now and also pay for little things like groceries and all that so my parents don’t have to,” Christensen said.

Even though Christensen is getting the wage increase Prop. 206 will grant her, she said she doesn’t think it will help.

“Everything I pay for ends up more expensive,” Christensen said. “But I guess if I’m not buying as many things, the two dollars will start to add up.”

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