$15 / Hour Living Wage
The current minimum wage is egregiously low and in need of major adjustments. If the minimum wage from 1968 had been adjusted for inflation, our current minimum wage would be over $11.00 an hour as opposed to the $7.25 an hour it is today. The federal government is in effect subsidizing many of the corporations that are paying these low wages as many of their employees qualify for, and will receive, food stamps. Why are we subsidizing corporations like Wal-Mart instead of requiring that they pay their workers a living wage?
Over the next few years we need to raise the minimum wage to a level that people can actually live on. We would have to raise the minimum wage to $12.00 an hour for our wages to be on par with wages from the late 1960's, but this would still be insufficient in most parts of the country.
If we want to do right by our workers we need to pursue a minimum wage that is at least $15.00 an hour. To reach this goal we should raise the minimum wage by $2.00 an hour every year over a four-year period until the minimum wage is over $15.00 an hour. Then we would raise the minimum wage annually based on changes in buying power so that the wage always maintains its parity.
A higher minimum wage would help millions of people get out of poverty, reduce the number of people that require food stamps, and help grow the economy as many people would gain purchasing power. American workers deserve to be paid a living wage. It's time that we gave it to them.