The People Party is here for you! We want to see the United States governed with equality, justice, and freedom for all. The members of the People Party are committed to indexing a federal minimum wage to match that of local housing costs. By creating an index between minimum wage and the local costs of living, all Americans who work full time (40 hours or more per week) will be able to afford basic housing as well as all other necessities within the same area as their place of employment. No matter what the cost of living becomes, we will always be sure that our citizens can afford (at least) the necessary housing for themselves as well as their family and those who they must provide for. This idea removes the standard multipurpose country wide minimum wage. We would like to see a widespread living wage that varies and fluctuates throughout the country as the cost of living goes up and down. With this plan in place, we can have a better way of creating a minimum wage while also drastically improving society.
Minimum wage is generally viewed as a labor standard that imposes costs on businesses and organizations, but at the same time, it benefits the workers who are living off of minimum wage.
- The current federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour enacted on July 24, 2009. Each state also has the option to set their own minimum wage; which is required meet or exceed the federal minimum wage. Although this may seem low, it might be the best wage for certain areas of the United States with lower costs of living; while other states and/or cities might need to raise that in order to meet the basic living wage.
- According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, last year (2016) 1.532 million hourly workers earned the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. And nearly 1.8 million people earned even less than that due to some sort of exemption such as tipped workers, full time students, or certain disabled workers. This accounts for a total of 3.3 million people who work for an hourly wage that fell at or below the federal minimum wage. In 2015, the percentage of hourly paid minimum age workers fell to 3.3 percent, from 3.9 percent in 2014. Those in the age range of 16 to 19 also make up about half of the minimum wage working population.
- According to Fact Check, based on the previous federal minimum wage hike proposal from President Barack Obama to $10.10 per hour, an estimated 500,000 million jobs would have been lost, although it is hard to say for sure. They also stated that some of those jobs lost would be future employment opportunities that fail to materialize, not current jobs that would disappear.
But on the positive, it would move about 900,000 people above the poverty threshold as these families would gain about $5 billion in real income, which is why the People Party strongly believes it would be best to index the minimum wage based on living wages in order to minimally burden society.
The People Party believes we should create an economy whose minimum wage is indexed based on the local living cost. This plan will greatly improve society.
- We will find a set rate at which minimum wage will be held for the United States, and as local housing costs change, we will raise or lower that rate. Although, it will never fall below that initial rate. Minimum wage workers will earn the rate of pay for which metropolitan area they live in, as it is indexed by local housing costs.
- The money these people earn from working minimum wage jobs is often entirely spent before the next pay period. One third of of this goes towards housing, one third goes towards food, and the other one third would be used towards any other necessities.
- The indexed minimum wage would fluctuate based on these factors in each metropolitan area. By having a higher minimum wage based on the local living cost, low wage workers will be more capable of meeting their basic needs to live as well as more frequently contributing back to their community. Simultaneously, having a lower minimum wage in other areas with a much lower living cost will allow businesses and organizations to expand from the money they saved paying the low wage workers while also allowing the workers to continue earning a basic living wage to properly support themselves.
- The plan would be federally funded through the taxes we pay from all areas of the United States. Areas with higher living wages and a higher minimum wage, will therefore have a higher tax rate. The areas with lower living wages will and a lower minimum wage, would output a lower tax rate. Most of the money from the areas with an increased tax rate will be contributed to societies with a lower living wage to help increase their economies.
- The plan will benefit all low wage workers in the United States. The only people this would burden are those businesses in areas with a higher living wage, thus having to pay their employees more money which equates to less gross profit.
The People Party would like to see the United States become a place of equality and fairness in society for all. We envision an indexed minimum wage based on basic local living costs. We can improve our economy in numerous ways by getting this plan in motion. We want to see our communities full of prosperity with opportunity for everyone. With a wide spread, fluctuating minimum wage, we strongly believe that our country can become fortunate enough to increase our citizen’s quality of life, as well as increase success and lower our poverty rate.