Should minimum wage be increased?
What do the people say?
Minimum wage should be increased because....
•Raising the minimum wage would increase economic activity and urge job growth.
The Economic Policy Institute stated that a minimum wage increase from the current rate of $7.25 an hour to $10.10 would inject $22.1 billion net into the economy and create about 85,000 new jobs over a three-year phase-in period.
•Increasing the minimum wage would reduce poverty.
A person working full time at the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour earns $15,080 in a year, which is 20% higher than the 2015 federal poverty level of $12,331 for a one-person household under 65 years of age but 8% below the 2015 federal poverty level of $16,337 for a single-parent family with a child under 18 years of age.
Minimum wage should not be increased because....
•Increasing the minimum wage would force businesses to lay off employees and raise unemployment levels.
The Congressional Budget Office projected that a minimum wage increase from $7.25 to $10.10 would result in a loss of 500,000 jobs.
•Raising the minimum wage would increase poverty.
A study from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland found that although low-income workers see wage increases when the minimum wage is raised, "their hours and employment decline, and the combined effect of these changes is a decline in earned income... minimum wages increase the proportion of families that are poor or near-poor."