Letter: Dems will push wage increase

Earlier this year, Democrats in the General Assembly pushed forward a bill that would gradually raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. The Republican controlled legislature never picked it up, but following a successful midterm election for Democrats, we may have the opportunity to push it forward.

The current $8.30 an hour is simply not enough for a person to live on, let alone someone with children.

In an article published in March, Greg Lawson, a Buckeye Institute research fellow, argued that that, “Typically, people don’t stay in these minimum wage jobs their whole careers.” Sure, most people don’t stay in minimum wage jobs forever. But they’re working at them now – and they’re struggling.

Even if they eventually move up to a higher paying job, their old job still needs to be filled. Is there really any reason why someone working full time shouldn’t be able to afford to live? Isn’t that the entire point of the minimum wage?

Republicans argue that tax cuts will stimulate the economy because people will have more money to spend. Maybe it’s time we apply the same idea to wages. When a full-time employee at McDonalds or Walmart doesn’t have enough money to eat and must rely on taxpayer funded food stamps – does anyone really believe that it’s because these corporations can’t afford to pay a living wage? Of course they can afford it, but they know that by skimping out on their employees’ wages they can steal taxpayer money and let the middle class pay the bill.

Bryce Hoehn, Fort Jennings

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