Rebecca K. North Dakota

Raising the Minimum Wage

Raising the minimum wage is a big argument in the U.S. Parents are struggling to support their kids and there is something people can do about it.

Dear future President,

The problem of the minimum wage not being a living wage needs to be addressed. My name is Rebecca Kostenko and I am a junior in high school. I got my first job at the end of June this summer. I get paid very well and have been continuing to work during the school year. When I bought a used car, my parents decided I needed to make payments on it. When I think about having to make monthly payments on something, it makes me nervous. In the spring, I play a school sport which means I have practice every day. Therefore, I worry about not working enough next spring and not keeping up on my car payments. I only have a small car payment and my parents give me a place to live and food to eat. What happens to the people who have more than one thing to pay for, whose parents aren’t or can’t be there to bail them out if they need money, or when they have a kid and can barely take care of themselves at a minimum wage job. People deserve to be able to afford to take care of themselves and their families. With the minimum wage in the United states at an average of $7.25 an hour, people will have to worry about money more than they should. As the future president this should worry you because these people are now your people to help.

Minimum wage should be made into a living wage and fluctuate with the economy. Raising the minimum wage would improve standards of living for working families. An article in the Buffalo News made a good point about how raising the minimum wage would be good for families. According to the article, parents would have more time to take care of their families if they don’t have to work more than one minimum wage job to support them. This could help a student's performance in school and help parents feel more connected to their families.

Raising the minimum wage would have a positive effect on work effort and productivity as seen in an experiment in Colorado. President of the Southern Colorado Labor Council and organizing director of the state employees union, stated that two Qdoba Mexican restaurants in the state experimented in raising wages and bumped the minimum to $11 an hour. Employers were pleased with the experiment. They had less turnover, less absenteeism, improved customer surveys, and increased sales that they expanded the wage increase to all 17 Qdoba restaurants. The raise did not lead to notable price increases nor did it affect the demand at the restaurant.

Some people are concerned the the negative effect it could have on the economy. Dottie Gallagher-Cohen, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, states that raising the minimum wage would cause higher prices for buyers and fewer jobs in the job market. Many economists in New York say that raising the minimum wage, in New York, would not upset their economy or cause a loss of jobs. With more states trying to raise the minimum wage and more studies being done, we could find out if raising the minimum wage would affect the economy or not.

The raising the minimum wage is so important because so many people struggle with being able to pay their own bills. This should concern and cross people’s minds because one day it could happen to them. They could end up working a minimum wage job and not having enough money to pay their bills and support themselves. Support for increasing minimum wage would help others have a better life. If the minimum wage was raised it could someday help someone you know.

Magic City Campus

Thomas - Jr English 2

Mr. Thomas' 2nd Hour Junior English

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