By the end of 2021, the classic dispute over the increase in the minimum wage emerged.
While some activists claimed that increasing the minimum wage was an alternative to struggle against poverty in times of COVID-19, small business owners affirmed that this measure would be counterproductive for the current U.S. economy.
Meanwhile, in California, a “Living Wage Act” initiative arose and will go into effect in 2023 for small businesses. In Remoto, you will learn about the Living Wage Act Initiative 2022 and how California is well-positioned among the states with the highest minimum wages in the U.S.
The “Living Wage Act of 2022” Initiative
After intense negotiations on the minimum wage in California, a unique initiative emerged: the Living Wage Act of 2022.
Through this initiative, the people in California could vote for an increase in minimum wages. Californian activists and entrepreneurs who struggle daily against economic precarity embraced this initiative since it allowed them to restore their economic rights. For example, Joe Sanberg the chief proponent behind the movement to increase California’s hourly minimum wage, believed that raising California’s minimum wage by as much as $18 an hour could satisfy the most necessities.
Furthermore, Sanberg stated that he supported this initiative because of his own experience in poverty. “People understand that wages in California are piss-poor, and I am sick of it. This is personal for me. I grew up in situations where my mom raised me by herself. She often worked multiple jobs,” Sanberg recounted.
In contrast, business owners and commercial associations opposed the Living Wage Act 2022, arguing that California is still in a state of emergency.
After this act went into effect in California, many small business owners considered closing. “During this pandemic, we’re still in a state of emergency. Many small businesses are talking about whether or not they should close”, explained Carl Chan from the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce.
If the Living Wage Act 2022 is massively voted and approved, California will be the state with the highest minimum wage in the country.
States with the highest minimum wage increases in 2022
In 2022, different states increased their minimum wages in critical ways. However, some states raised the minimum wage for only a small group of employees, while others do not even plan to progressively increase wages for workers.
In this video, you will learn about the states with the lowest and highest salaries in the U.S.
For example, Georgia and Wyoming have the lowest minimum wages. In contrast, historically, Washington, New York, and California have the highest minimum wages. In addition, it is essential to note that states such as Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, and Florida are developing initiatives to increase the minimum wage and meet the most substantial needs of all workers.
Impacts On Small Businesses
The increase in the minimum wage in California will have critical effects on the stability of small businesses.
First, three economic sectors could experience price rises, such as retail trade, restaurants, and health services.
Second, the total cost of spending on salaries and people ops would increase exponentially, forcing less-stable companies to close or take out loans.
Third, the cost of price increases in small businesses would undoubtedly be borne by consumers.
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