ECON 100 The Minimum Wage Debate

St. Charles Community College 
ECON 100   Survey Economics 


The Arguments For  The Arguments Against
Workers deserve a basic, fair wage:
  • Low income workers are unable to support themselves or their families.
  • Prevents exploitation of employees and helps them earn enough to support their Families and themselves
  • Most minimum wage earners generallyare young people with out families to support.
  • Two thirds of the minimum wage earners are single, and they earn enough to put them above the poverty cutoff.
        AND, one half of these single workers   
        are teenagers, most of which have no 
        financial responsibilities except maybe 
        for their clothes and their car insurance.
The minimum wage raises earnings at the bottom end of the wage distribution.  Minimum wage earners are generally low skilled youth who lack the skills they need to be hired.
  • Workers who are unable to reach the next highest rung – that is, those who lack the skills to warrant even a minimum wage – may be shut out of the job market completely.
If there is unemployment as a result of the minimum wage, it is not great.
  • A higher minimum wage causes unemployment. 
  • The minimum wage merely enriches a few teenagers at a far greater expense to many others. 
  • Those most likely to lose work are disadvantaged teenagers, primarily minorities.
  • It can make employers more likely to discriminate on the basis of sex or race. 
  • When the government mandates an above market wage rate, a surplus of low-skilled workers results, and it becomes easier for employers to practice discrimination.