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Changes to laws may decrease demand for labor

: A help wanted sign is placed in the window of Veronica M clothing store on June 21, 2013 in Pasadena, California
: A help wanted sign is placed in the window of Veronica M clothing store on June 21, 2013 in Pasadena, CaliforniaPhoto by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

President Barack Obama is under intense pressure to raise the minimum wage for workers under government contracts. And now, according to an article in KSDK Washington, disabled workers are asking for the same increase.

The President promised to sign an Executive Order raising the minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $10.10. The statement was made by the President during his State of the Union Address, and the increase would apply only to those working under government contract.

According to Wikipedia, the first minimum wage laws were enacted in New Zealand in 1894. The laws were designed to establish the lowest amount a company could purchase labor, and the lowest amount a person can sell labor (themselves) for. The law was also designed to eliminate sweat shops.

Washington State, at $9.32 per hour, has the highest minimum wage in the U.S. The minimum wage rate in Illinois is $8.25 per hour.

One proponent of increasing the minimum wage called the potential increase an “economic homerun.”

“At the very least, a higher starting wage means a higher quality of entry level candidate. Second, it may allow some families to move away from food stamps permanently. Finally, the additional dollars in the paycheck will be converted to goods and services. This is an all-around good thing.”

Critics of the proposed wage hikes felt that it would lead to job loss. One critic went as far to say that any change in the minimum wage will essentially lock some candidates out of the job market "permanently."

Source: KSDK Washington

Should the minimum wage be raised?
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