Letter: Raise the minimum wage
The minimum wage was created to provide an amount that would allow for basic necessities, including food and shelter. The current wage of $7.25 an hour, an amount that has not changed in the past five years, does not meet that criterion.
The minimum wage goes to people who need transportation to get back and forth to work, individuals who need to support a family larger than just themselves. Those who will benefit most from a raise in the minimum wage are older than 20. They are hard workers employed on either a full- or part-time basis and have responsibilities that go beyond their immediate concern for survival.
The economy is improving. Our Main Street is looking to become a destination. We need to invest in our workforce. Make the workers of today the ones who will help to provide the jobs for tomorrow.
Raising the minimum wage puts more money in people’s pockets. That means more money in the cash registers of local businesses. Raising the minimum wage to $9 per hour by 2016 would raise the wages, either directly or indirectly, of nearly 76,000 New Hampshire workers – or 12 percent of the labor force.
The time to act is now. For the sake of our state economy and for the sake of our state’s low-wage workforce, we need to raise the minimum wage to a wage that can actually be lived on.