We The plan to raise the minimum wage to

We live in a free and civilized society where all workers should be guaranteed a living wage free from exploitation. A guarantee of minimum wage would be beneficial for employees, leading to better employee retention, employee family health as well as respect for the worker ‘s ability and time. The plan to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour across various states in the United States and Canada is a positive step in this direction.In today’s world of high living expenses wages at the bottom have not kept pace. It is becoming hard for workers in service occupations like restaurants, grocery, and departmental stores to earn a decent living. In 2015 about 2.6 million Americans were paid at or below the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. These workers have found it difficult to make ends meet and have to depend on public assistance, such as food stamps to survive.Raising the minimum wage would increase economic activity and spur job growth. People who work at minimum wage jobs would earn extra money to spend and therefore increase the economic activity. An increase in the economic activity would also have impact on job growth. It is documented by NPR news, in 2014 that “In the 13 states that increased their minimum wage, the number of jobs grew by an average of 0.85 % from January through June, whereas the average for the other 37 states was just 0.61%.” In 2014, State- by-State hiring data, released by the Labor Department, is in favor of raising the minimum wage.If low-income workers earned more money, their dependence on government benefits would decrease. The Center for American Progress reported in 2014 that raising the federal minimum wage by 6% to $10.10 would reduce spending on the food stamps by 6% or $4.6 billion. The increase in minimum wage would shave  billions of dollars off annual government spending on income-support programs.The minimum wage has not kept up with inflation. Because the federal minimum wage is not indexed for inflation, its purchasing power has dropped considerably since its peak in 1968. The minimum wage in 1968 was $1.60, which is equivalent to $11.16 in Jan. 2016 dollars and which is 53.9% higher than today’s $7.25 federal minimum wage. Between July 2015 and the last increase in the minimum wage in 2009, the federal minimum wage lost 8.1% of its purchasing power to inflation. Raising the minimum wage and indexing it to inflation would let low-wage workers adopt a better standard of living.                 In addition, raising the minimum wage would also help reduce the federal deficit by lowering spending on public assistance programs and increasing tax revenue. Since firms are paying poverty-level wages to about 5 percent of the workforce — these low paid workers must rely on Federal income support programs.” According to James K. Galbraith, PhD, Professor of Government at the University of Texas in Austin, “(because payroll- and income-tax revenues would rise as a result of an increase in the minimum wage), the federal deficit would come down.”Increasing the minimum wage would increase worker productivity and reduce employee turnover.  It is obvious that by increasing minimum wage, low paid workers will be more interested in their jobs as they know their salaries are able to take care of their families. Increases in wages increase productivity and turnover rates tend to decline. Alan Manning, DPhil, Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics, stated in 2014: “As the minimum wage rises and work becomes more attractive, labor turnover rates and absenteeism tend to decline.” A 2014 survey found that 53% of small business owners believed that “with a higher minimum wage, businesses would benefit from lower employee turnover and increased productivity and customer satisfaction.” Raising the minimum wage would lead to a healthier population and prevent premature deaths. People earning more would bring healthy nutritious meals on the table, people are more likely to lead healthy lifestyle with plenty of food, more exercise, less smoking and less emotional problems. This would even prevent premature deaths. A 2014 Human Impact Partners study by Rajiv Bhatia, MD, found that raising the Californian minimum wage to $13 an hour by 2017 would “significantly benefit health and well-being.”  Edward Ehlinger, MD, State Health Commissioner for Minnesota, stated that raising the Minnesotan minimum wage from $6.15 an hour to $9.50 by mid-2016 was probably “the biggest public health achievement… in the four years. In conclusion, increasing the minimum wage is a win-win situation where people who earn a minimum wage would be able to lift themselves from poverty, be able to live healthy and happy life and spend the extra dollars they earn for things other than making ends meet. It would spur the economic growth of country and help the country save money from government assistance. In my opinion, the minimum wage should be raised in steps eventually to $15 an hour till 2025 that is going to be beneficial for the economic growth of our country.


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