All tagged Starvation Wage
Yes, a higher minimum wage would make it harder for me to compete for good attendants. I expect what I pay will have to keep rising. Nonetheless, I’d like people to be less strapped all the time, as mine are.
While it isn’t always easy, Passion and Inoshita also described what makes Hawaii beautiful and unique, which is what makes the struggle worthwhile, and why issues like homelessness and the need for a living wage need to be addressed more effectively than it has been to date.
“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” (Matthew 25:35-36)
Overall, increasing the minimum wage is a net positive to all of Hawaii.
Consumer spending is two-thirds of our economy. So when we scratch our heads about why Hawaii’s GDP is not growing as fast as the rest of the country, the answer lies in how much money our residents have to spend. At $10.10 an hour, our low-income workers clearly do not have enough to buy food and pay rent — in short, be “self-sufficient.”
Increasing the minimum wage is a priority for the Hawaii Democratic Party, which passed a resolution last year advocating for a living wage in Hawaii. Currently, the minimum wage in Hawaii is $10.10 an hour, which equates to about $21,000 annually for full-time workers.
And why $17 an hour? The State of Hawaii’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism in its 2016 study, says that a single Hawaii worker needs at least $17 an hour to survive.
During previous hearings in the House, the bill received significant opposition from business interests, but substantially more support from others. Supporters cited research that increases to minimum wage does not substantially harm businesses — often quite the contrary.
The crises that Hawaiʻi Island has faced in recent months with volcanic eruptions and flooding have made the need for a living wage even more urgent to help people get back on their feet. Kagiwada and Donev are hopeful that legislators are mindful of what the community needs for long term recovery and will pass a living wage this session.