Raise The Minimum Wage

A $15 minimum wage is beneficial to workers and the economy alike and should be implemented.

Missouri+citizens+rally+outside+of+Missouri+state+capitol+building+in+Jefferson+City%2C+MO+in+support+of+raising+the+minimum+wage.

Jason Hancock

Missouri citizens rally outside of Missouri state capitol building in Jefferson City, MO in support of raising the minimum wage.

Ava Albracht, Features Editor

Minimum wage workers have long been told that they get paid what they “deserve” for the job that they do and that if they really wanted to make more money that they can just work harder and somehow magically lift themselves out of poverty. This rhetoric is demeaning and extremely damaging because it is not true. Increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour could help lift 30 million people out of poverty, according to Columbia Broadcasting System, sobeit if the top 1% of America does not make as much money so that they are not able to buy another Ferrari to drive to their summer home in the Hamptons. Being able to provide for one’s family and make sure their basic needs are met is so much more important than being able to spend money as though it does not even have any value. 

While the opposers of an increase in wages claim that doing so would cause layoffs and hurt businesses, it would really allow more people to participate in the economy and boost businesses’ revenues and allow them to expand which would create more jobs. In addition, a $15 minimum wage would allow the government to cut spending for public assistance programs between $13 and $31 billion, according to the Economic Policy Institutes. Rather than doing a patchwork job with government aid and relying on private organizations, our nation could make a real change that benefits all communities equally and change millions of lives. Not to mention, the money saved from public aid could be reallocated to schools which would help more students have opportunities to beat the cycle of poverty and contribute to and participate in the economy.

In addition, raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour could help increase social security funds that are currently running dry because it would increase the revenue social security makes from taxes, according to Consumer News and Business Channel. The minimum wage has not changed since 2009, whereas the cost of living has gone up by 20%. It is unacceptable for employers to continue to take advantage of workers and still not pay them enough to support themselves, let alone a family. This causes many minimum wage workers to have to work exorbitant numbers of hours or obtain multiple jobs just to keep the lights on.

The Raise the Wage Act is not only important for humanitarian reasons it would also benefit the economy in multiple areas. It is frightening that we as a society are more concerned with how the top 1% (large business owners) are living than the vast majority (workers). What is one less vacation to some is the ability to provide for one’s family to others, we need to begin to prioritize the latter and one way to do so is to raise the minimum wage to $15.