Rachel Notley’s NDP continues to insist that they are proud of their minimum wage plan. And for good reason; after all it proves they are forging ahead with implementing Socialist/Progressive (SoProg) ideology. And for SoProgs, ideology trumps all else, including reality.
Because the reality is that minimum wages fail the very segment of society they purportedly help.
First of all, some employers are forced to lay off staff, or delay or abandon expansion of their business which would include additional staff. That hits the poor the hardest and removes tax dollars from the economy.
Minimum wages create a barrier-to-entry for kids looking for their first job, and for immigrants whose Canadian language skills are limited or nonexistent.
A negotiated wage for most 15-year-olds living at home isn’t a hardship, but an opportunity to learn workplace skills such as showing up for work on time (regardless of how you spent the previous evening); organizational skills, customer relations, and teamwork. And for immigrants with no local language skills and where the employer has to provide both training and translation, a negotiated wage is an opening to success in their new home.
We have a 13-year-old grandson who will turn 15 in 2018 when the $15 an hour minimum wage comes into effect. Let’s say he wants to work a few hours on weekends and sees a business that interests him. He might be willing to work for nothing, or for 6 or 8 or $10 an hour in order to get work experience, and to see if he likes the business.
I’d say that’s his (and his parent’s) business, but the SoProgs have told him; “If you can’t find someone willing to train you and pay you $15 an hour, you can’t work in Alberta. Period.”
So now we have these new “trainees” at our local McDonald’s.
If society wishes to provide a safety net for genuinely needy families or individuals – and in general I would agree with that – then society should provide it,not place the financial burden on individual business owners forced to finance ideologically driven, “one-size-fits-all” solutions.
Last year I wrote about the minimum wage and was taken to task by some employers who said that they have no problem paying the minimum wage, or more. One fellow who owned a software development company said he was proud to pay above minimum wage.
Well, so is my wife who owns a home cleaning business. She pays well above to over double the minimum wage. That’s a wage differential. A 50% minimum wage increase over four years will force her to maintain that differential and increase wages more quickly than financial prudence would dictate. and it will force her to increase prices far faster than the rate of inflation. It will also force her to slow expansion which means fewer additional staff, and less income tax for the government. Or, it may put her out of business.
Last summer, I asked my granddaughter – then age 20 – what she thought of raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Her immediate response? “That will just make the cost of everything go up.” Unfortunately, that’s reality. But reality won’t have the slightest effect on the world’s SoProgs, because their ideology says otherwise.
You might want to send this to your children or grandchildren and see if you get a conversation started. It works for us!