Last Thursday, a $15 minimum hourly wage for fast food workers was proposed by the wage board of New York. While this should appeal to the average worker struggling to make ends meet, not everyone is on board.

 

In an interview with CNN, the CEO of Dunkin’ Brand, Nigel Travis, vocally spoke out against this proposal. Travis called the proposal “absolutely outrageous.” In his eyes, that much of a hike will “impact small businesses and franchises,” preventing these businesses from having the financial means to hire on new employees.

 

Although antagonistic of this proposal, Travis does feel that we should begin to implement changes towards raising the minimum wage; he feels that an hourly wage of $12 would benefit both employees and employers alike. He rationalizes this mentality with the argument that teenagers and others early in their careers comprise the bulk of fast food workers, and often do not need a wage that supports a family. However, in New York, MIT’s living wage calculator indicates that a single adult requires a wage of at least $12.75 just to get by, while an average family needs to earn $18. 30 per hour.

 

Wage rates based on countries

(agenda.weforum.org)

For comparison, the World Economic Forum recently compiled a list of minimum wages from various industrialized countries. Australia ranked the highest ($9.54 US dollars per hour after taxes), while Mexico ranked the lowest (less than $2 US dollars per hour after taxes). The United States ranked 11th.

 

Such low wages have proven detrimental effects on our economy. Minimum wage workers often need to rely on publicly funded programs such as Medicaid just to get by.

 

The fact remains that minimum wage workers in the United States barely make enough to make ends meet. Whatever the figure, something needs to be done so that the foundation of our economy can begin to thrive.

 

What are your thoughts on the proposed minimum wage? Do you work in the fast food industry, and is your wage enough? Comment below or tweet @connerws to tell us what you think!