Reasons Why Raising The Minimum Wage

1600 Words 7 Pages
Why does the minimum wage exist, for what purpose does it serve? By definition, according to Merriam-Webster, the phrase “minimum wage” stands for “an amount of money that is the least amount of money per hour that workers must be paid according to the law.”. In the context of that same definition, Merriam-Webster links “minimum wage” to the phrase “living wage”, which is defined as “a subsistence wage. A wage sufficient to provide the necessities and conforms essential to an acceptable standard of living.” With that said, does the minimum wage provide that minimal acceptable standard? If not, does the current proposition to raise the federal minimum to $15/hr make sense? Given that the cost of living and overall expenses have risen dramatically, …show more content…
The lower the minimum wage, the more eager a minimum wage worker would be to enroll in a community college course at night, improve his or her skills, and apply for a higher paying job.” (Stroll, 2014) Yet, none of that makes sense, statistically. National Center for Education Statistics show more and more people are getting educated; total enrollment numbers across all reporting institutions totaled around 20.5 million in 2016, up from 13.82 million in 1990, with the number expected to increase to 23.29 million by 2025. (National Center for Education Statistics, 2015) The number of people going college clearly contradict this claim, and fails to address why more people aren’t going. For one thing, it’s common knowledge that American education is extremely expensive, with prices averaging from $9410 for public four-year tuition and fees for an in-state student, to $32,410 for private four-year schools. (The College Board, n.d.) And those numbers are just for tuition. If someone lives rurally, they’ll likely be forced to live on campus, which adds additional thousands to the college pricing in the form of dorm rental and meal plans. Book costs are absurd, with mere textbook codes costing $100, $120 and new editions of books being prohibitively expensive. What’s keeping people from getting an education that might allow them better pay isn’t minimum wage, but more so the prohibitive cost of attending it and the very likely possibility of needing to take out both private and federal loans, keeps people out of getting an education if they want

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