At the beginning of this year, the state minimum wage was raised to $9 per hour. This was a very positive move for many, but there is a repercussion that unfairly affects experienced workers.

My son has been a front-end worker at Shaw’s Millcreek in South Portland since 2004. Before the new minimum wage of $9 per hour went into effect, he was making $8.62 per hour, more than $1 an hour over minimum wage.

Now that the new minimum wage has gone into effect, he is back to making minimum wage: $9 per hour. This is the same rate that is being paid to workers doing the same job with far less experience, including new employees; there is no provision in the law for workers like my son and their years of work experience.

So for all his experience, loyalty and hard work, he is now being paid the same amount as a teenager just hired with no experience.

This is totally unfair to my son and others in the same situation. I have talked and written to managers at Shaw’s, to no avail. They seem to feel that, because my son got a “raise,” that’s fair. Yes, it follows the letter of the law as written, but is it the right thing to do? Absolutely not.

I understand from the Maine Department of Labor that there are several bills in the works to do something about this. I urge people to contact their senators and representatives to voice support for a provision in this law, so that experienced workers are compensated fairly for their time on the job.

Karen Westerberg

South Portland