The minimum wage should be raised now. The widening gap between economic classes greatly impacts the United States and many other countries, yet this issue is rarely discussed. Due to low wages in the past few decades, the middle class has significantly decreased in size. It has been eight years since the federal minimum wage was last raised. In fact, according to the article Why It’s the Perfect Time to Raise the Federal Minimum Wage, Chris Lu the former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Labor, argues that “there is no better time than now to raise the federal minimum wage. Three out of four Americans support an increase; the economy is healthy; and many employers are already raising wages.”As businesses have increased profits and CEOs earn higher wages, the minimum wage has not been advancing at the same rate. The United States no longer produces equal opportunities for every citizen. Americans stuck earning low wages have an immense financial burden, making it challenging to get ahead.
In contrast, some people believe the minimum wage should not be raised. For example, In the Forbes article A Case Against Minimum Wage, Gary Wolfram argues that “No one can stay in business if a worker can only produce $10 an hour of value but the government forces them to pay their workers $15 an hour. A pay raise may sound compassionate, but it is not a sustainable option.” In addition, he argues that the cost of producing goods will increase with a wage raise. Therefore, less people will buy the company’s products. I disagree with these arguments because I believe that Americans should be able to thrive financially for the work they are doing. It is unfair for them to be underpaid. In conclusion, I believe that minimum wage should be raised to help the middle class, the economy, and individuals stuck in poverty.

http://time.com/4870916/congress-federal-minimum-wage/
https://www.forbes.com/sites/realspin/2017/09/12/a-case-against-the-minimum-wage/#583e647d499e

CC BY-SA 4.0 Should the minimum wage be raised? by Erica is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

3 Comments
  1. KJ Crumpton 6 months ago

    After reading your post, I disagree with you Because I feel that minimum-wage should not be increased. You made an excellent point when you included how three of four Americans support minimum wage increasing. But, did you know As soon as minimum wage is raised, companies have to begin outsourcing jobs because they can’t afford to pay them. For example, other countries are willing to work for only, “$10.10 per hour” which would mean that less Americans would have jobs (1) so americans trying to get a job will have a very hard time getting a job . Also, Employers might raise prices of their product according to a study conducted by Purdue University estimates that by raising the minimum wage of fast food employees to $15 per hour, the public can expect a 4.3 percent increase in prices (2) This show that with a increase in minimum wage would cause prices to be raised in order to pay the employees. Lastly Raising the minimum wage would disadvantage low-skilled workers. University of California study on teen workers — show that minimum wage increases boost incomes significantly without discernible impacts on employment levels or hours worked for affected workers, including low-skilled and teen workers.”(3) so teens trying to get that first job with not have enough experience so they will be forced into the workforce.

  2. Stefanie 6 months ago

    After reading your post, I agree that the minimum should be raised. You made a good point by saying that by raising the minimum wage it would help those people stuck in poverty, but you didn’t really elaborate on that argument. The Economic Policy Institute published an article that stated, “Today, at the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, working 40 hours per week, 52 weeks per year yields an annual income of only $15,080. This is below the federal poverty line for families of two or more” (1). The minimum wage used to keep families of two or more above the poverty line, but now many families are below the poverty line because of the low number of income they earn from their job thus making them below the federal poverty line. A young man named Jairo Gomez lives with eight other family members. He grew up in poverty like other kids in his city. He told a story to NPR about how poverty held him back, and how he is trying to push through it. Opinion hosted by NPR published an article that stated, “I asked my mom to do the math, and she said right now, my family makes $30,000 a year. According to the federal government, we’re $15,000 below the poverty line” (2). From the evidence it’s clear that a lot of families are below the poverty line, and we can help them get over the line if we raise the minimum wage. It’s hard living with little money because you don’t know if you will have enough for yourself or for your family. This causes stress for a ton of parents which also leads to them having a great risk of heart disease and heart attacks. In which case this does happen to a poor individual, they may die, and leave their kids as orphans. Plus without a guardian to provide them with their needs, it would be very difficult if not impossible to survive.
    Another reason why I think the minimum wage should be raised is to reduce race, and gender inequality. Many people are experiencing racial minimum wage inequality. Some workers are paid more because of their race. Janelle Jones, a economic analyst explains that, “Average wealth for white families is 7 times higher than average wealth for black families“ (3). Also the MAKERS published an article that says, “African-American women earn 64 cents and Latina women earn 56 cents for every dollar earned by a Caucasian man” (4). It shows that some races are paid higher because they are a certain type of race, and that isn’t fair for other people. This makes it hard for some people because they have a family to feed, and they are being paid so low just because of their race. The MAKERS published an article that says, “In 2015, only half of the world’s working-age women are in the labor force, compared to 77 percent of working-age men” (5). Furthermore, the Pew Research center published an article that stated, “Based on this estimate, it would take an extra 44 days of work for women to earn what men did in 2015” (6). It’s clear that many women are being paid lower than the guys, and that isn’t fair for women who work so hard for that money. By raising the minimum wage each gander will be paid fairly, and equally, and that will erase gender inequality.
    The last reason why we should raise the minimum wage is because it’s not high enough to allow people to afford everyday essentials. According to a Graduate of Florida International University Alfonso Llanes states, “According to a 2013 poll by Oxfam America, 66% of US workers earning less than $10 an hour report that they “just meet” or “don’t even have enough to meet” their basic living expenses, and 50% say that they are frequently worried about affording basic necessities such as food” (7). This shows that people are barely passing through without running out of cash, but for some people they do over spend, and end up below the poverty line because they aren’t being paid enough. Many people work hard just to be able to buy what they need to live, and that is why we need to raise the minimum wage. Tom Perez, a secretary of labor states, “The national minimum wage of $7.25 per hour is unconscionably low. It is an affront to our values, and it has remained unchanged for more than five years. During that time, the cost of food, utilities, transportation and other essentials has gone up, but low-wage workers’ paychecks have remained the same” (8). The price for essentials has gone up, but the minimum wage hasn’t changed. How does the minimum wage not change, but the essential prices go up? That makes it harder for families with a lot of people because they are going to need more essentials for their family, but even so sometimes some of those families don’t have enough money to support the family.
    The minimum wage should be raised because it would help those people stuck in poverty, it would help reduce race and gender inequality, and because it’s not high enough to allow people to afford everyday essentials.

  3. Mia 7 months ago

    Erica, his is a great political issue, and its two sides clash very strongly. I, myself, think about this issue a lot, and I still can’t make up my mind about what the government should do. I love the Forbes quote you involved in your writing because it set in perspective. I think it would be great if our society could have a minimum wage raise, but I do think that a lot of people would lose their jobs. How could the government insure to raise minimum wage without decreasing employment rates? IF the wage was to be raised, it would boost the economy and many people’s quality of life and that is something that would make equal opportunity more of a reality. I love this post and it would be great to see more support for each side in your next post!

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