Asked to pick the top two policies that would help low-income New Yorkers get ahead, the minimum wage and more affordable college were the top choices in an annual survey released Thursday.
It’s no surprise that low-income New Yorkers and Democrats backed a higher minimum wage as one of their two choices from a list that included lower taxes for businesses and more affordable childcare. Fifty percent of each group told the annual Unheard Third survey that a higher wage floor would help.
What is notable, according to the Community Service Society of New York (which runs the annual poll and is also a funder of City Limits) is that 37 percent of middle- and upper-income New Yorkers and 35 percent of Republicans also support a minimum wage hike.
Making college more affordable is a leading choice of Republicans (37 percent), low-income New Yorkers (41 percent), middle- and upper-income households (48 percent) and Democrats (50 percent).
Another interesting quirk: Only 1 percent of any of the political or income groups thought affordable housing would make a big difference in helping low-income people get ahead, but a separate part of the survey found broad support for housing programs. It could be that people see housing support as more important for treading water than for swimming upstream.