Federal Minimum Wage - Essay Example

3 pages
612 words
University of Richmond
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Research paper
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It is important to have laws and regulations that govern the minimum amount of wages that employees pay their skilled and unskilled workers (Dube, Lester, & Reich, 2010). Depending on the qualifications of an individual, it is important to have the law specify how much the employees should get per hour and month (Schmitt, 2013). This helps avoid the possibility of having underpaid workers as well as employers taking advantage of the staff by refusing to pay them their honest wages. With the current increase of expenses in the standards of living, it would only be fair to ensure that people earn a decent income to enable them to sustain their lives. Hence, it is important to consider making an adjustment on the federal minimum wage by increasing it (Meer & West, 2015). Increasing it means that people can earn more after working for a short time and there will be employees who will be ready and willing to work at the rate specified by the employer. It also means that if the employer fails to meet the minimum wages, they can be taken to a court of law.

It is also important to have the different jurisdictions in a country specify their minimum wage rates. This is because different counties, cities, and states have different wealth capacities and economic stabilities. Regulating the current minimum wage is prudent but should not be adjusted downwards as it can affect the lives of the people who depend on the daily wages to make a living. One of the major problems that might face the adjustment is the resistance from the employers who think the law would not favor them (Dube, Lester, & Reich, 2010). They would have to hire fewer people so that they can pay them that minimum wage specified by the federal states. Schmitt (2013) suggests that jurisdictions can also specify the minimum wages for every type of job. For instance, those in the hospitality industry can have more or less minimum wage rate than those in the medical field. Each industry must have their specific definitions of wage rate to avoid misunderstandings that come from a generalized idea of having a federal minimum wage rate for all.

If different industries specify the minimum wage rates for their skilled, semi-skilled, and unskilled labor, then there would be no conflict of interest among different stakeholders in the economy (Meer & West, 2015). For instance, the hospitality industry is a major concern for employers and employees since they believe that staffs make more money from the tips received from the customers. This may account for more money than other employees in other industries may and end up earning more than they anticipated (Schmitt, 2013). However, that should not be a factor to making decisions for the wages paid to employees since hospitality industries differ in ranks and types of services to the public. Employees handling technical work may need to have their minimum wages increased than those who work in less demanding jobs. Specifying the minimum wages in a specific industry helps in pushing the others to adjust theirs and accommodate the growing needs of the community. The inputs of all stakeholders in the industries help improve the performance of the economy as a whole. The new workforce will be motivated to work due to the increased wages rate.


Dube, A., Lester, T. W., & Reich, M. (2010). Minimum wage effects across state borders: Estimates using contiguous counties. The review of economics and statistics, 92(4), 945-964.Meer, J., & West, J. (2015). Effects of the minimum wage on employment dynamics. Journal of Human Resources.Schmitt, J. (2013). Why does the minimum wage have no discernible effect on employment?. Center for Economic and Policy Research, 22, 1-28.

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