Raising Minimum Wage to $15

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Raising Minimum Wage to $15

Kayli Marques, News

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New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy has passed the law to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2024. Currently, the minimum wage is $8.85 an hour, but by July 1st, it is set to raise to $10 an hour. Each year, the minimum wage will be raised a dollar until it reaches $15 in 2024. There has been talk of the possible raise in minimum wage ever since the idea was proposed a few years ago. Since then, other states such as California and New York have already passed laws putting these changes into effect. Murphy expresses, “we are taking a historic step to provide more than 1 million New Jersey workers a stronger foothold in the middle class. No one working a full-time job should ever live in poverty. Putting the minimum wage on a clear and responsible path to $15 an hour is good for workers, good for our businesses, and good for our economy.”

About 10 percent of New Jersey’s population is below the poverty line, and the aim of a higher minimum wage is to reduce the number of people in poverty. The law will be in effect for almost all businesses, with the exceptions of some smaller companies that don’t meet the employee requirement.

However, it is debatable if the increase in minimum wage will do more harm or help in the long run, as many small businesses have already had to fire many of their employees or even shut down. As a result of an increased minimum wage,  some businesses have been forced to cut hours, or even lay off their workers. Many stores in other states have even had to shut down because they couldn’t afford to pay workers and still earn a profit. Clearly, the minimum wage will continue to be intensely debated within the state of New Jersey in the coming years.