If you think that the $15 minimum wage will force employers to pay *you* more, think again.
An increase in the minimum wage provides many more options for the employer to choose from, such as:
1) Firing you (and making others do more).
2) Automating your job.
3) Replacing you with someone that is worth a $15/hour pay (skill-set/qualifications, performance/efficiency, drive/ambition, etc)… A person that will provide more value and less liability to the business.
Which will it be? Lets explore the 3rd option.
If you are a minimum wage employer, at a $8/hour rate you have access to only the lower segment of the employee market. Mostly the people who are willing to work at $8/hour… The young, the gainfully-unemployable, those that don’t have any other options, and those that have the performance, skill-set, drive, and ambition of a $8/hour employee.
In this situation, the segment of the employee market who’s performance and abilities are worth $15/hour are out of your reach. Such as the millions of people with experience, and/or college degrees, that stay unemployed because they are not willing to work at $8/hour. And like all the others that currently make, and are worth, the $15/hour the free marketplace pays them for their service.
So the question becomes – why would an employer keep the $8/hour workers and pay them $15/hour, when that employer can fire every single one of them, and replace them with (a smaller number of) $15/hour employees taken from the higher market segment, and in-turn gain a better value and ROI?
Now I know what you are thinking… I’m worth it, dammit! And that might be true (for a few). But what about the other 50%-90% of you? The ones that are walking around holding up signs, that won’t accept that that they are not worth 2x as much (to the employer).
To put it simply, as a current $8/hour employee, can you really compete with the higher employee market segment for the same job?
This is what will happen:
1. About 25%-75% of you will lose your current job over the next years.
2. There will be a bunch of new hires from the higher segments of the employee market – none of which will be $8/hour employees.
3. Overall, there will be a net loss of jobs. And there will be more competition for the same job (and possibly less job security).
4. The businesses that are exempt from the minimum wage laws will gain a competitive advantage (by maintaining lower prices for consumers).
5. That advantage will cause issues for businesses that are not exempt from the minimum wage laws.
6. To fix the loss, those businesses will further reduce jobs by automating them.
Now this might help some, but it won’t help most.
This isn’t meant to be mean, I have no problems with an increase of the minimum wage, but it is clear that all the people demanding a $15/pay are firing themselves from their jobs.