The teen labor participation rate is lower than it’s ever been. The 20–25 cohort also has a historically low labor participation rate. They’re not learning the basics of working, and I’m not talking about specific skills like cleaning a grill or mopping a floor. I’m talking about showing up on time, every day; stepping up to fill in when something goes wrong; figuring out what to do when one’s immediate task is completed; responding positively to tough customer feedback, etc.
You learn this stuff by working, not by staying home hoping for a $15/hour job.
Teens desperately need more work experience to learn how to become better workers. As it is today, we’re wasting their youth. A lower minimum wage for them would help a lot.