The minimum wage, like most cogs in the welfare state, can be argued for on compassionate grounds alone. What is the minimum that an individual’s time is worth? If we let someone do a job for less than a decent amount, we are a poorer society for it, even if some of us are a little wealthier.
But then, by that argument one might justify a communist dictatorship. There comes a point when the costs outweigh the benefits.
So it heartens me to share with you some newly quantified benefits of raising the minimum wage. Two recent studies both found that a rising minimum wage doesn’t put people out of work.
The researchers say their findings may be due to the fact that a higher minimum wage attracts more workers and reduces a firm ‘s vacancy rate; in addition, decreased turnover increases productivity and reduces the cost of expanding employment, they say.
It always makes me happy when it turns out the solution to any problem isn’t a race to the bottom.
[photo] “Counting coins” by Marion Doss