Minimum Wage Needs to be Increased!

I got my very first job as a teenager in high school. At that time, I was kid in school looking for part-time work to make some extra money to spend on things that I wanted. I didn’t have the responsibilities of an adult. My parents paid the bills and made sure that our family had food, clothing and shelter. So needless to say, at that point in my life, I wasn’t expecting a high wage from employers. I was ok with making the minimum wage paid to most kids my age. Years after graduating highschool, I didn’t expect to see adults my age and even some much older making that very same minimum wage that I did as a teenager.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2011 3.8 million Americans earned minimum wage or less. Most of these workers were out of their teens. Keep in mind that about 70 percent of those workers also didn’t work a full 40 hour schedule. For those citizens, surviving had to be practically impossible with the cost of living.

People assume that our country’s welfare system is widely abused by lazy non-working individuals. Maybe people are in denial about a very real problem. While there are probably some people who take advantage, there’s a good number of hard working citizens who don’t make enough to sustain their households thus qualifying for these assistance programs. Our country goes into a recession and we can’t weather the storm because of those who don’t make enough to have a savings of any kind. Credit scores plummet because people can’t balance paying all of their bills on time. The economy suffers because people aren’t comfortable financially to spend, which causes companies to suffer and have to lay off employees and raise prices of products and services. Companies also deal with high turnover rates and training costs because people are quickly moving on when they find better paying jobs. People are becoming more stressed and depressed because of financial struggles. An increase to the minimum wage would have a positive impact on all of these issues.

If minimum wage doesn’t increase, the United States of America will only continue to be considered the land of opportunity for those who relocate here from third world nations because coming here is a huge upgrade from the sub-standard living conditions there, but a large number of our own citizens will continue to live in poverty and struggle being forced to live in the sub-standards of our own country.

References

Shemkus, Sarah. Increasing the Minimum Wage: Pros & Cons. Will Increasing the Minimum Wage Hurt or Help Employees & Businesses? Article. Http://www.salary.com

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