“Higher wages could lead some businesses to hire more experienced workers than young people for entry-level work. It’s an attack on young people and their ability to learn how to work.”
Americans for Limited Government President Richard Manning was quoted in a Washington Times article this week, Half of U.S. states raising minimum wage in 2022.
Entry-level workers across much of the country will get bigger paychecks this year as 25 states and the District of Columbia phase in higher minimum-wage laws.
Most of those 26 jurisdictions have bumped the federal minimum wage of $7.25 for non-tipped workers, which hasn’t been increased since 2009, to at least $10 an hour.
The laws took effect in 20 states on Jan. 1. Another three states will raise the rate on July 1, and Florida will do so on Sept. 30. New York raised its minimum wage from $12.50 to $13.20 per hour on Dec. 31.
Rick Manning, president of the Fairfax, Virginia-based Americans for Limited Government, said the higher wages could lead some businesses to hire more experienced workers than young people for entry-level work.
“It’s an attack on young people and their ability to learn how to work,” Mr. Manning said. “In today’s economic environment, where small businesses are struggling for survival with supply chain difficulties, the government raising the cost of labor will kill some businesses, put some employees who aren’t deemed worthy of the increased wages out of work, and increase automation like self-serve checkouts at Walmart and the grocery store.”
Mr. Manning, a Labor Department chief of staff for public affairs in the George W. Bush administration, said thousands of workers on the lower end of the wage scale lost their jobs in Seattle because of a 2014 city law that gradually raised the minimum wage for companies with more than 500 employees from $9 to $15 an hour.
“We know that in Seattle, the City Council raised the minimum wage with the expectation that workers would receive a significant pay increase,” Mr. Manning said. “Instead, a lot of restaurants paid the best-performing employees more than $15 an hour and laid off the worst-performing employees.”
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