Right now there are only 5 states and Washington DC that has increased minimum wage. Currently President Obama is advocating strongly for an increase to occur nationwide. Even with the majority of people supporting this proposal, many lawmakers have not jumped on the Presidents bandwagon to enact this new policy.
At the current rate of $7.25 per hour people can not make ends meet, so they need to rely on social welfare services such as food stamps and housing assistance to get by. If the minimum wage was increase to a more livable wage, then many would not have to rely on the government for basic survival.
Some opponents of a wage increase insist that it would be harmful to the economy causing employers to lay off worker but this really hasn’t been proven. They believe small businesses would suffer because it would be too expensive to hire workers. However studies have shown when wages are increased, it actually helps the economy. When people make more, they spend more money.
This is not a new fight. We have been in an ongoing battle for higher wages. As stated by Segal in Social Welfare and Social Programs, “… since 2006 the minimum wage stood at $5.15 per hour then gradually raised to $5.85 in 2007, $6.55 in 2008 and $7.25 in 2009.”
From 2006 to 2009 the minimum wage was increased each year despite the economic crisis in 2008. I guess the governments needed to take a hiatus with providing the working poor with the annual wage increases during the height of the economic crisis. But it’s now time that they allow minimum wage to catch up with cost of living.
President Obama is asking for the minimum wage to be increase to $10.10, you can help him with this fight. Go to this website and sign the petition.
Seattle passes the nation's highest minimum wage of $15/hour.