WASHINGTON. – Doubling the minimum wage to lift millions of Americans out of poverty is Joe Biden's ambitious proposal, which is already on the desk of legislators. This could result in a social revolution for the poorest in the United States, a country with glaring socioeconomic disparities.
“Even before the pandemic, the federal minimum wage of $7,25 (per hour) was economically and morally indefensible”, said Democratic representative from Virginia Bobby Scott when introducing the bill.
This has not changed one iota since July 24, 2009. Although very popular among the population -even in the ranks of the Republicans- and supported for more than a decade by the unions, the initiative has collided with the opposition of the Republicans under pressure from business lobbies who reject additional costs.
The US economy suffered the worst decline since World War II and with a 3,5% contraction in 2020, the outlook is 'highly uncertain'.
“This is not a radical ideal,” said Bernie Sanders, a former progressive presidential candidate. who called the $7,25 starvation wages.
"In the richest country in the world, when you work 40 hours a week, you should not live in poverty," insisted the Vermont senator who is promoting the project and hopes to convince the skeptics.
The economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic mainly affects small businesses, especially in the gastronomic and services sector.
Therefore, they do not see with good eyes this proposal included in the gigantic rescue plan of 1.900 million dollars. The vice president of the National Restaurant Federation (NRA), Sean Kennedy, has given a new welcome to the project, especially since he understands the obligation to pay this minimum wage in full, regardless of tips imposed on customers.
These allow bosses to pay employees just two or three dollars when you're famous. “tips” fill the $7,25 gap. This measure "will entail insurmountable costs" for many establishments that will have no choice but to lay off more employees or close permanently, Kennedy predicts.
For her part, new Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen says raising the minimum wage will lift tens of millions of Americans out of poverty and create opportunities for countless small businesses across the country. External source
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