Saturday, July 25, 2015

Minimum wage boost would help, not hurt our low wage workers and our economy (#2367)

In today's real economy, since the great recession, more jobs have been created in the low wage category than any other. So middle class folks who lost jobs during that recession are forced to move forward in a lower paying economy. With our current federal minimum wage still at $7.25 an hour, many cannot have a quality life with just one job and have any hope of getting back to a middle class status. Meanwhile those large and medium sized businesses that employ minimum wage workers are making large profits. So there is an inequality between wages and profits like there hasn't been since just before the great depression nearly 90 years ago. What does raising the minimum wage do for our economy? First it increases the buying power for those who are receiving the new higher amount. Remember, those who are on minimum wage earnings have no hope for savings since everything they need is not being met on their current earnings. What has been shown through numerous studies is that low wage workers, when given more earnings spend all their earnings on necessary items they couldn't previously afford and have gone without. What this new spending does is add an influx of spending to the economy whereas more goods and services can now be supplied, and new jobs created. The quality of life rises for those at the minimum wage level when increases to the minimum are provided and is not inconsequential. Second, everyone who was making just above the minimum will also see their wages increase since they had already achieved some success in garnering more than the minimum. They then will also reintroduce those higher wages back into the economy through necessary buying power. Our minimum wage is so low now that the tiers of earnings above it are insufficient in having a quality of life we hope to start from. Raising the minimum wage is right and good and the economy and the families it effects will be better off for it. Income inequality is still the greatest economic threat we face and raising the minimum wage is a step toward alleviating some of that threat, among other things for a later discussion.

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