Congress Should Raise Minimum Wage Essay

648 words - 3 pages

The first minimum wage was put in place by Congress in 1938 as part of the Fair Labor Standards Act. It was set at twenty-five cents. Since then minimum wage has continually fluctuated, and currently, it is $7.25, but Congress is now considering the Fair Minimum Wage Act (Whittner) which would, over the course of two years, raise minimum wage to $10.10 (Sherk). Adding almost three dollars to the United State’s minimum wage will most certainly have a large, positive impact on the nation. Congress should raise minimum wage because it would boost the economy, it would create jobs, and it would not be right to let people who work full time to live in poverty.
Increasing minimum wage to $10.10 an hour will boost the economy because if people are earning more money, then they will spend more money (Shemkus). In a study done by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, minimum wage workers who received a wage that included an extra dollar per hour created an average of $2,800 in new consumer spending the next year (Berman and Scheller). That is a significant amount of money from such a tiny change, and if enough people were given just a one dollar raise in salary, then that would mean millions of dollars in new consumer spending, so raising salary $2.85 would mean even more money for the economy.
Jobs and the economy are directly related, so if the economy is steadily growing, then the amount of jobs will too. Increasing minimum wage would have a major impact on job availability. In fact, a chart published by the Review of Economics and Statistics shown in the Huffington Post explains that between the years of 1991 and 2006, the rate of job growth has mimicked the increase and decrease of minimum wage. Another study done by the National Employment Law Project in the Huffington Post stated that “when ten states increased their minimum wages in 2013, they added the equivalent of 1,580 full-time jobs to the economy”. If the minimum wage was raised to $10.10 then a 140,000 net increase in full-time jobs would occur, due to an increased GDP of 32.6 billion dollars, according to a recent study by the Economic Policy Institute in the Huffington Post. Already, minimum wage increases put into place on January first, are...

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