In
conclusion, it is safe to say that the benefits of raising minimum wage outweigh
the negatives of it. The economy, the people, and the government will all see a
positive impact and that is the main goal of a higher minimum wage. Hillary
Clinton once stated, as cited by MSNBC, “I favor a $12 an hour minimum wage at
the federal level” (Clinton). A $12 minimum wage is in fact a good federal
level wage that should be implemented in the near future. Due to the fact that
the current level is about $7.25 an hour, raising it by about five dollars
would be a god start of increasing wages. Too many people work full time and
still live in poverty. With the help of higher minimum wages, more people will
be able to not only live more comfortably, but the hard work put in by people
making these wages would finally pay off.

Overall,
controversial topics such as a rise in minimum wage should not just be briefly
thought of, but thoroughly examined as it can affect not just the people making
those earnings, but the economy and government as well. Many people against
rising wages would argue that it only would hurt the economy and raise poverty
levels. On the other hand, those in favor of higher wages expect it to raise
the amount of consumer spending, and help low income families greatly. Based on
the evidence provided, minimum wage should be increased to further benefit
society as a whole. In the past, cities and districts who have raised their
minimum wage rate have proven that they benefitted from it despite what those
opposed have said. For instance, Zachary Roth, writer for MSNBC, wrote the
article, “No one knows if a $15 minimum wage will cost jobs”, and definitely is
in favor for a higher minimum wage too. He elaborated on his argument by
referencing examples of cities who saw a positive impact from increasing the
minimum wage. He stated, “Supporters of a raise note that after San Jose raised
its minimum wage to $10.30 in 2012, its fast-food industry saw an increase in
hiring. San Francisco had a similar experience after going to $12.25 in 2003”
(Roth). These are just two instances of how cities who raised their minimum
wage not only put more money in the pockets of people already working for a
minimum wage salary, but also saw a boost in jobs. The opposing side argued
that jobs would be lost as a result, but it is clear that, that is not
necessarily the case.

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Similar to the effect on poverty
levels, government spending could change dramatically with a higher minimum wage.
An impact on poverty levels would definitely result in an impact on government
spending as well. Either less government spending would be necessary, or more
would be required. Those in favor of higher wages claim that those on welfare
would decrease as a result. Due to the fact that federal minimum wage is lower
than welfare, employment is affected. CK Thompson, writer for CNN, made a claim
stating, “Welfare pays more than minimum wage in 35 states” (Thompson),
ultimately giving Americans an incentive not to work. Welfare being more than
double the amount of federal minimum wage causes many families who rely on this
money to not work and just collect the government funding. A higher minimum
wage, closer to the welfare wages, would cause more people to find jobs
ultimately decreasing the amount the government has to spend. Contrary to that
theory, the opposing side would argue that government spending would also
decrease, but not to benefit society. People earning higher wages would be
making a higher income, resulting in the loss of the government assistance that
low-income families rely on. Jana Kasperkevic, a write for The Guardian,
emphasized the effect minimum wage would have on people depending on government
assistance. She said, “The higher the minimum wage gets,
the less in benefits the family is eligible to receive” (Kasperkevic). A family
earning more money would result in people not qualifying for the funding they
need to live off of. A higher minimum wage does not necessarily mean a high wage
and that’s what those opposing higher wages would argue.

Equally
important to the impact on the economy, higher minimum wages would definitely
impact people living in poverty. There are multiple possibilities that could
happen to poverty levels with a higher minimum wage. One of those possibilities
being the rise in poverty levels across the country. As minimum wage rises,
other factors such as employment rates and the amount of hours in a shift
employees receive decrease. Dan Springer of Fox News described the effect of
worker’s salaries in Seattle after the city raised its minimum wage to $15. He
said, “The working
poor are making more per hour but taking home less pay” (Springer). Workers in
Seattle, as a result of a higher minimum wage, receive either loss of
employment or less hours in their shift. Causing them to bring home smaller pay
checks than before. If that was the affect in Seattle, many would argue that on
a national level, the losses could be even more severe. Making the nationwide
poverty level increase as many people either lose their jobs, or hours on their
shift. Although this may have been the case in Seattle, it is still believed
that a higher minimum wage would actually benefit the nation’s poverty level. Families
who are currently living in poverty could potentially earn more money to
support them and their family if they have one. Many people aren’t making
enough money because the cost of living is becoming higher than what they are
making. Affording to live comfortably without struggling is continuously
growing and a higher minimum wage is arguably the solution to decrease the rate
of poverty. An article released by The Guardian, describes how many people,
including a woman named Fran Marion, aren’t benefitting at all from low wages,
and are actually struggling financially. In the article, Fran explains how she
has worked two jobs and still remains very poor because low – wages aren’t
enough to support her or her family’s needs. She stated, “My family is not
benefiting. I’m working so hard to come home, and still I have to decide
whether I am going to put food on the table or am I going to pay the light
bill, or pay rent” (Marion). She continued to describe her journey into
homelessness and the fact that she could not afford any insurance like millions
of other Americans. With the help of higher wages, workers like Marion, would
be able to better support her family and potentially not live in poverty. The
cost of living is continuously rising; therefore, it is arguably a good idea to
raise minimum wage to meet the rising cost of living. Many people living off of
minimum wage are adults with bills and others to support who ended up living in
poverty. Making the cost of living more affordable for low-income Americans,
opposed to the potential loss of jobs and hours worked, make an increasing
minimum wage very debatable. Poverty levels have always been an issue in the
nation, and a higher minimum wage definitely could be the deciding factor in
either decreasing it or increasing it.

To
begin, raising the minimum wage would have a dramatic impact on the economy.
Many people would argue that the resulting impact on the economy from higher
minimum wages would be a good thing. There are many people who would not only
disagree with these statement, but would say that spiked minimum wages would
harm the economy. A Fox News article containing a study on minimum wage stated,
“a proposed minimum wage hike would cost thousands of jobs and millions of
dollars in lost income” (Fox). Meaning that they believe that a boost in
minimum wage would result in many jobs having to lay people off. People getting
laid off of work would be a result from smaller businesses not being able to
keep up with higher wages to pay its employees. Due to the fact that they can’t
keep up with their salary expenses, some businesses would be forced to lay off
some of their workers, ultimately harming the economy. On the other hand, it is
believed that an economic boost could be the result of higher minimum wages. Many
cities in the process of raising their minimum wage have shown that the
spending done now grows with the minimum wage, boosting the economic spending
levels. Jonathan Tasini, author of the article, “America needs higher wages,
not lower taxes”, would argue in favor of the economy being boosted if minimum
wages are first. He stated, “70%
of our economy is powered by consumer spending. That fact leads to this
clear observation: If people don’t make enough money, they won’t be able to buy
stuff” (Tasini). In other words, with a raise in wages the economy, which is
driven by the amount people spend, people would be able to spend more causing a
boost in the economy. Those opposing arguments to the effect minimum wage has
on the economy is what has driven this topic to be so controversial. The loss
of jobs versus the amount of spending people could do as a result of raising
minimum wage is basically what the argument is. Despite the controversy
surrounding the effect on the economy, there would also be an effect on poverty
levels as well.

Imagine standing over a scorching
grill for hours, taking care of the elderly, both lifting and transporting
heavy loads, basically doing back breaking work; only to be making less than $8
and hour. That is the reality for millions of people in the work force who are
earning minimum wage. Whether or not minimum wage should be raised has been a
question many people have been discussing for years and has become quite
controversial. Those opposed to increased minimum
wages would argue that a minimum wage salary is already sufficient enough, or
in some cases even “too high”. In spite of the opposing sides, it is almost
certain that a rise in minimum wage will either positively or negatively affect
several aspects of the country. For one, an increase in minimum wage could
result in an economic shift. Furthermore, the current poverty level within the
country, with the help of a higher minimum wage, would either decrease or as a
result. Thirdly, a change in poverty levels caused by a higher minimum wage
would ultimately change the amount of government spending and those who receive
it. Minimum wage being raised would definitely be impactful not only the people
receiving those minimum waged salaries, but also the economy, their families, and
even the government funding.

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