The Living Wage
As an alternative to the minimum wage, some localities have instituted a “living wage”
requirement in which employers must pay a wage designed to ensure low-wage workers and
their families can live above the poverty level. However, this effort has met with stiff
resistance from some interest groups, and generated considerable debate among economists
about whether the living wage ordinances are the best form of government intervention to help
low wage workers. Your assignment this week is to respond to the key questions below.
What specifically do “living wage” ordinances call for?
How is the “living wage” different from the “minimum wage?”
Who is helped, who is hurt by a living wage requirement?
What underlying data is used to justify a living wage requirement?
What are the long run impacts of a living wage requirement?
For overall arguments in favor of the living wage see the liberal think tank Economic Policy
Institute (search for living wage)
For overall arguments against the living wage see the conservative think tank National Center
for Policy Analysis (search for living wage)
For more technical economic research opposing the living wage see the Employment Policies
For legal research in favor of the living wage see the Brennan Center for Justice
Other articles (for and against)
“Perspectives on a Living Wage”
Organizations working in favor of the living wage:
Universal Living Wage Campaign:
Living Wage Resource Center (Acorn):
Your final product will be a paper that
Addresses each of the four questions above in total.
Is APA fortatted.
The requirements for your assignment are:
A. Answer each question fully
B. Define the overall subject of each question.
C. Cite at least three (3) resources from this week’s materials.
D. The data should be effective and reflective of the current situation.
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