Busted: Minimum wage myths

The Fight for $15 movement is on fire!

Across the nation, three cities have passed $15/hr legislation, three others are soon-to-follow, and a dozen others are proposing legislation to raise their local minimum wages despite the stagnant federal wage that has sat at $7.25 since 2007.

min wage myths

Low-wage workers have been rising up and fighting for better pay and working conditions since 2012. Their efforts have sparked a revolution which has corporations feeling the heat. These companies and their lobbyists are working to extinguish the movement by pushing out myths intending to scare workers into submission.

We’re here to shed some light on these myths and give you the truth about raising the minimum wage.

 

MYTH: Minimum wage jobs are for teenagers.

Incredibly few low-wage jobs are for teenagers. The average low-wage worker is 35 years old. In fact, 88% of minimum wage earners are over 20 years old, half are over 30, and almost one third are over 40.

 

MYTH: Raising the minimum wage will cause severe job loss.

According to the US Department of Labor, minimum wage increases have had little to no negative effect on employment as shown through studies by credited economists. These studies also demonstrate how wage increases reduce employee turnover, saving companies money on training costs.

 

MYTH: Our economy will suffer and costs of goods will skyrocket.

No, our economy will not suffer. Local wage increases around the US in the past year have improved economic stimulation for local economies. As for inflation, well, that depends on the consumers and the products. First, any inflation caused by a raise in the minimum wage would be small. Second, better wages always amplifies the purchase-power for low-wage workers and rarely affects workers of high incomes. For example, a raise in the minimum wage will affect the price of a burger from McDonald’s (barely) but it will not affect the price of a luxury car.

 

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