The Human Service Organizations Study

In Pennsylvania, the governor has proposed raising the minimum wage starting with an increase to $12 and then annual 50 cent increases until it reaches $15 an hour.  In this qualitative study, we conducted in-depth interviews with 26 human service leaders of Human Service Organizations of varying size to understand the potential effects of raising the minimum wage on human service organizations. This project will soon progress into a new stage, using the interview data to inform a survey to collect data from human service organizations in Western Pennsylvania.

Research Objectives

  1. Gain an understanding of the perceptions of Human Service Organizations in Pittsburgh toward the minimum wage increase proposed by Governor Wolf and the broader movement to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour;
  2. Assess the perceived capacity of Human Service Organizations to raise wages without reducing services or programs and assess policy and funding changes that will be necessary to avoid service and program reductions.


26 Human Service Organization Directors, CEOs, CFOs

Research Method

  • In-depth semi-structured interviews.
  • Currently developing a close-ended survey


School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh

Products from This Research