Economy > Work > Jobs > Minimum wage
minimum wage USA
Biden To Establish $15-An-Hour Minimum Wage For Federal
April 27, 2021
minimum wage earners UK
minimum wage > pro-labor laws passed by cities and counties
live on the minimum wage
“wage theft” USA
the violation of federal labor laws,
including failure to pay the minimum wage
and time-and-a-half for
denial of meal periods and rest breaks,
and mandatory unpaid
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Economy > Work > Jobs > Minimum wage
And at the Bottom
of the Wage Scale ...
January 4, 2013
The New York Times
Nearly a million low-wage workers in 10 states will get a modest raise this
year. In Rhode Island, a new law has raised the state’s minimum wage by 35 cents
an hour, to $7.75, which will work out to an average annual raise of $510 for
11,000 Rhode Islanders. In nine other states — Arizona, Colorado, Florida,
Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Oregon, Vermont and Washington — laws that peg the
minimum wage to inflation will result in increases of 10 cents to 15 cents an
hour, for hourly wages ranging from $7.35 in Missouri to $9.19 in Washington.
By contrast, the federal minimum wage has been stuck at $7.25 an hour since
2009. In all, 19 states and the District of Columbia set their minimums above
that level, providing a much needed lift for the lowest-paid workers. But
state efforts are no substitute for a higher federal minimum because the ability
to earn a minimally acceptable income should not depend on where a worker lives.
Will Congress finally raise the federal minimum wage this year? It would be the
least that lawmakers could do. In the fiscal cliff deal, lawmakers locked in big
tax breaks for wealthy investors and for heirs of multimillion-dollar estates.
At the same time, they allowed the payroll tax cut for low- and middle-income
taxpayers to expire, without enacting new provisions to ease the blow. The
lowest-paid workers will be hit the hardest. In the states that raised their
minimum wage this year, much of the increase will be eaten up by the higher
payroll tax. In the other states, paychecks will simply be smaller.
Efforts to raise the minimum invariably run into arguments that employers,
especially small businesses, cannot afford to pay a higher wage. But the
evidence shows that most low-wage employees work for large companies, which have
largely recovered from the recession and have reinstituted generous pay packages
for executives. As for low-wage workers at small businesses, many are waitresses
and other “tipped” workers for whom the federal minimum wage is $2.13 an hour,
where it has been since 1991. Clearly, there is ample room for an increase.
A related argument is that a higher minimum wage destroys jobs, especially
employment for teenagers. But research shows that most low-wage workers are over
the age of 20 and suggests that paying them a higher wage could actually create
jobs by bolstering consumer spending.
A higher minimum wage is also an obvious way to counter the accelerating trend
toward low-wage work and growing income inequality. For decades, various forces,
including the decline in unionization and the global competition for jobs, have
pushed down wages in the United States. But the situation has become worse in
the last few years, as most of the middle-wage jobs lost during the recession
have been replaced with lower-paid work.
Raising the minimum wage is always a fight. Congress has approved legislation to
do so only three times in the last 30 years. President Obama promised to take on
this fight back in 2008, when he called for a federal minimum wage of $9.50 an
hour by 2011, indexed to inflation. It is past time to keep the promise.
And at the Bottom of the Wage Scale ...,
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