Following similar announcements in Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles, New York state’s minimum wage for all fast food workers will rise to $15 per hour by mid-2021, with those in New York City itself to benefit first by the end of 2018. New York State Governor, Andrew Cuomo, has called the decision a step towards “true economic justice.” However, evidence is mounting that the minimum wage issue, seen as another centerpiece of Obama’s progressive economic agenda, may not be providing the benefits it was meant to.
In Seattle, where the above rate was introduced in April, there are numerous and substantiated reports of workers requesting less hours, so they do not lose their qualification for public subsidies, such as food, rent and childcare. As an example, in March, just prior to the introduction of the new minimum wage level, there were 130,851 people enrolled in the Basic Food Program. In April, following its introduction, that number had fallen by only 475. Furthermore, a study by the American Action Forum found that, in 2013, a $1 increase in the hourly minimum wage led to a 1.48% increase in unemployment, equating to around 747,00 people, as smaller businesses actually laid off staff to be able to afford the new wage.
The minimum wage is designed to move people away from public assistance and lift them out of poverty. However, evidence is coming to light everyday that shows yet another of Obama’s “progressive” policies may well be seriously flawed. One New York McDonalds franchisee said the state wage board’s decision to recommend the rise only for fast food workers was “unfair and discriminatory.” If you are concerned about Obama’s progressive economic agenda, please Like & Share this post.