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Minimum Wage Battle

Dec 4, 2013|

Art Wheaton

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Fast food workers in 100 cities walk off the job tomorrow. Part of a push for higher pay the actions are the latest in a campaign to raise the federal minimum wage. Let's talk about it more now with -- we and he studies these sort of issues. And the buffalo office of the state labor school at Cornell University good morning -- Good morning they threatened me. Let you hear talk to me about this can someone live on minimum wage is a minimum wage even designed to be a way of living wage. Or is it more entry level training. It's more entry level training go living wage for the city of buffalo is much higher than the minimum wage. And there's basically two different living wage is one is whether you have health insurance in the others without it. But neither one of them are anywhere close to a minimum wage it's. It's mostly just for entry level workers usually kids were on folks are just made -- part turned out. Yeah I mean minimum wage is meant to us the same as a minimum skill. Pretty close it's minimum wage you typically associated with minimum skill or minimum value added that the amount of they amount of effort that you -- doesn't get as much value to the product. What then is your take on these protests are they justified in asking force say. As high as fifteen dollars an hour. All I don't think anyone on the on this strike flying wolf assume they will get fifteen dollars but I think they're trying to have a a number to try to raise awareness. When you try to think of things and how much it is or an average wage for US average wages earned nineteen dollars and ten cents an hour. So you're talking about what the average wage in the US is that for most of the people getting higher wages. Are getting it through a salary not to earth hour. So it makes it sound like a lot of money when you're talking per hour fifteen I think there's a lot more support by folks for ten dollars an hour. To raise the minimum wage and where people in the senate that has that they would do that as well. Two part timers -- into the workforce. Bring you don't -- of the workforce we have what I'm much more at risk workforce today that we did ever before is that there really no job security for many. Many people who are working for eleven. So that part time especially from the facts from workers are very flexible you can work. Thirty or forty hours one week at work and then acts so that if they need to cut costs -- cut -- worse. So it's not just the wage that's bad it's very hard for these workers to predict. How much their next check will be because they have little or no control over how many hours per week they will be allowed to work. Talk about some of the other unintended consequences when they cut hours when they raise prices of the wage went up. There's probably a likelihood that if they raised that they raise the minimum wage that prices would go up -- you have to remember that it's only gonna go out. A small amount to cover the amount of wages typically wages are only between five and 15% of the cost of the product. So that you could hear everybody in the air -- always have a much more stable workforce he wouldn't have as much turnover. It might improve the speed and equality of the circus that the fast food does that -- that fast that people don't know what they're doing. Fair and they can it if it will make an impact on the price is accurate absolutely -- not a big difference because. Ever when it comes as the count are gonna pay more money it's not just one person paying almost differences in wages it's spread out over every single. -- America or Wendy's or whatever subway item it's spread out so it's not a huge impact. As we close and -- give me prediction what happens next. I think you'll have eight and a modest turnout I don't know you'll have a large turnout for a hundred different cities. But it made enough of an impact that you called me this morning apparently and it's in the newspaper it's on the radio it raises awareness. And I think that's the primary mission and goal so that it's. Been effective of that so far I think it's some news coverage tomorrow further CB radio and newspaper. And it would be a very effective thing to try to say -- three -- awareness so Walker's. All right good and great insight our thanks for joining us. That's our -- he's an industry education specialist at the state industrial only relations school at Cornell University.

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