Letter to the Editor

Tristan Piotter

The minimum wage hasn’t “really” been $7.25 for a long time now. An ongoing argument between the Republicans and Democrats is whether or not to raise the federal minimum wage. Democrats believe that its current rate of $7.25 an hour is not enough to live off of and Republicans believe that a raise in minimum wage will result in a never ending cycle in rising prices and an economic collapse. The last time the minimum wage was changed was in 2009 when it went from $6.55 to $7.25. Low-paying employers adjusted their pay scales accordingly in 2009 and have continued to adjust to the population’s needs since. Below are minimum wages paid by companies as of October 2018, according to Marketwatch and The Motley Fool:

— Lowe’s Home Improvement – $12.95/hour

— Costco Wholesale – $13.14/hour

— Nordstrom – $14.96/hour

— Amazon, Charter Communications – $15/hour

— Ben & Jerry’s – $17.26/hour

Not only are companies raising the minimum wage, states are taking a stand as well. According to Paycor, California, Massachusetts and Washington will all have a minimum wage of $12/hour once 2019 hits. Many other states besides these three have taken it upon themselves to raise the minimum pay requirement through legislation. Although the federal minimum wage has been reading a depressing $7.25 for nearly 10 years, that is not what it “really” is. There are very few companies that still pay their entry-level positions that low of pay. So, don’t panic. If you are someone looking for a job to make ends meet or a high schooler trying to make some money, you will not have to settle for a wage of $7.25. Companies and some states see the difficulty in making a notable amount of money with the $7.25 rate and are willing to do their part in helping us working people, even if the federal government isn’t.