$12 minimum wage creates problems


Maddy Veghts, Staff Writer

The minimum wage in Illinois will increase every January 1 until the wage becomes $15 an hour. This year the minimum wage reached $12 an hour for anyone 18 or older. Anyone under the age of 18 that works less than 650 hours per year gets paid a different rate. If the minor works more than 650 hours per year, they get paid the minimum wage.  The federal minimum wage is $7.25 but the state minimum wage applies to most employees in Illinois.
While more money sounds like a good idea, minimum wage raising will end up killing jobs, and will increase the cost of products and goods. Raising the federal minimum wage will put the country further in debt. Employers sometimes don’t have to pay the money to spend on the new minimum wage, so they must let go of some employees or increase the price of their products. The companies need to make a profit and no successful company is going to forfeit their profit to pay the minimum wage, or they would go out of business and all employees would lose their jobs.
Shipping has also gotten so expensive because there is a shortage of shipping containers in China. For example, if a large company were to order something from China that would normally take 3 months to make and ship, it takes double the money and double the time to get it on the shipping container. All the shipping containers are either sitting in ports on the coasts or in cargo ships in the water. There are not many shipping containers in China or the countries that interact heavily on trade. With the increase of other costs such as shipping, companies don’t have the money for the raising minimum wage but they still need employees to stay in business.
Some positives are that we would finally get a balance closer to all markets. Different markets have raised prices and have made it nearly impossible for minimum wage workers to afford things like a house. The housing market was not raised with wages and most people cannot afford a house. The wage increase will lift some people out of poverty, if the company they work for can afford to give them the same hours at the increased rate.
A better solution could be making all the markets equal so more people could stop struggling. In the meantime, people should stop complaining that prices are going up because the increase in minimum wage is part of why it’s happening.