By: Louis Amoah
Increasing the minimum wage may help boost the economy, and help US workers. “Minimum wage increases can have some of the largest benefits for disadvantaged ethnic groups. The expansion of the federal minimum wage to cover additional industries in the 1966 Federal Labor Standards Act explained 20 percent of the reduction in the black-white wage gap during the Civil Rights era.” (Bahn, McGrew, 2019). This means that if minimum wages increase, then many people from minority communities will have an advantage. According to Bahn and McGrew, many blacks, Latinos, and other ethnic groups currently are at a disadvantage, and increasing the wages will make a difference in these communities. Six states have already increased their minimum wage. More states could soon follow suit. As mentioned, “The Raise the Wage Act of 2021, which phases in a $15 minimum wage by 2025, would raise the earnings of 32 million workers, or 21% of the workforce.” (Cooper, Mokhiber, Zipperer, 2021).
The minimum wage can affect Americans in a variety of ways. Ivon Guzman, Bank On Assistant Manager, Financial Educator, and Intern Supervisor at the Economic Awareness Council suggests, “Although raising the minimum wage can help individuals live a better lifestyle, raising the minimum wage may cause some people to lose jobs. Businesses might have to cut down jobs to maintain profitability and be able to have sufficient funds to pay everyone the minimum wage requirement. According to J.B Maverick, an active trader and stock market analyst, “The 2019 CBO report estimates that raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 would result in the loss of approximately 1.3 million jobs.” Miguel Davis, CPS economics explains, “The minimum wage will impact jobs across the US. More jobs will halt hiring except for franchises such as McDonald's, Amazon, etc. Increasing the minimum wage has increased income in households, helping them obtain more things and begin their journey to homeownership. They are also able to save more for big items.”
In conclusion, the minimum wage increase is important to us, and it needs to be considered to determine if it can benefit ethnic groups, raise the economy, and help our country be a better country.