Dear Next President,
Hello, I am 14 years old and a 9th grader who attends Lusher Charter School in New Orleans, Louisiana. I am writing to discuss an important issue with you, the need to raise the current federal minimum wage. In America today there are people on both sides of the argument. I believe that minimum wage should be increased because it will allow families to become more independent and not be solely dependent on government assistance.
According to the article Should the Federal Minimum Wage be Increased? by Sencer, the Department of Health and Human Services(DHS), “ Income inequality adversely affects life expectancy. In the 1980s, wealthy Americans lived 2.8 years longer than the poor, but by the 1990s, when the income gap had widened, the rich were living 4.5 years longer than the poor. The DHS is basically saying that people with higher income tend to live longer than people with lower income. In the article by Kim Krisberg, Raising minimum wage good for public health, not just wallets: Advocates call for federal increase, mentions the Minnesota Department of Health release of a white paper on income and health, “ which showed that income is not only tied to health, but to the factors that create the opportunities for better health, such as safe homes, nutritious foods and good schools.” These are just two of many articles that support my claim that the Federal Minimum wage should be increased.
Then again there are those who are against raising federal minimum wage because they believe it will have a negative impact on the economy. Again, referring to Sencer’s article, but in this case it shows the other side of the argument which states, “Those on the other side of this debate believe that raising the minimum wage would hurt small businesses, which would not be able to pay their employees. Businesses might even have to close, and employees would lose their jobs. There would be fewer job opportunities because businesses would be doing as much hiring. So, while employees who kept their jobs would be making more money, unemployment would rise.” Increasing minimum wage may not only harm small businesses but it may increase unemployment because some business owners aren’t willing to pay more, which may result with them reducing their staff.
In addition to the previously mentioned article, there is also the article Should the Federal Minimum Wage Be Increased? on ProCon.org which says, “ The Economic Policy Institute stated that a minimum wage increase from the current rate of $7.25 an hour to $10.10 would inject $22.1 billion net into the economy and create about 85,000 new jobs.” This will have a positive impact on the economy.
So Mr/Madam President, while there are those who use the claim of how the raising of the minimum wage will have a negative impact on the economy, I stand by my argument for support of an increase. An increase will infuse the economy with new spending, a larger tax base, and a less dependence on federal assistance. But most importantly an increase in the minimum wage will have a positive effect on the health and lifestyles of families within our country aligning for better health choices, better nutrition, and a choice for better schools. In conclusion, I respectfully request that you make this issue a top priority of your presidency.