This is the side of the ledger the No On R folks like Treasurer and sudden minimum wage increase (just not this one) supporter John Fullerton will not address. One would think that conservatives should be in favor of measures to insure the free market does not allow workers willing to work hard have to also depend on public assistance. This is the conservative that we are missing – the conservative from the Party of Lincoln.
So here are the numbers. These numbers are based on basic calculations of gross wages and publicly available public assistance eligibility tables.* Please don’t use these other than guidelines as each families’ budget determining eligibility will differ. I’ve made simple calculations for income for different households working differing number of hours. The table is sorted by number of people in family, then number of hours wage earners work. For simplification both wage earners work the same number of hours and max at two wage earners as the other one or two members are assumed to be children.
I then added lines for 24, 33, and 40 hours – the average number of hours it seems local businesses, for whatever reason, seem to want their employees to work. Then I also added lines for the current minimum wage ($9, not $8 Mr. Fullerton) and the $12 minimum wage your “YES!” vote will garner for Eureka’s employees on Tuesday. Legend: The yellowish color represents families/income levels that would be eligible to both Medi-Cal and CalFresh. The green (ish) color are the family/income levels that would be eligible to only CalFresh. Caveats – outside Medi-Cal which is complete public assistance for health insurance costs – the tax-credit benefit is not included in this graph – also – I used 50 weeks to multiply weekly earnings instead of 52 assuming employers will find ways not to pay for vacations or sick days – especially for the newer or <40 hr employees.
One of the things I take away from this table is in all cases – 40 hours worked by both parents (or a single person) at $12 will put that family on the outside looking in at public assistance. This is not to say they would not be eligible as each family will be different, but it would go a long way to help them use their own resources for food and health care.
Conservatives should be for a $12 minimum wage if they truly believe in individual responsibility.
The truth is of course, they don’t. They don’t care if the game is rigged even against those who do put in a full days work for the job creators. They simply do not want to foot the bill for a social safety net our society has created to ward off the worst excesses of the free market.
This is why Don Smullin of the Chamber of Commerce nor John Fullerton can answer this question.
“Why should tax payers pay for business’ costs such paying a wage that will cover everything including food and medical insurance?”
I am an eligibility worker and half to walk a fine line here. I obviously gain a large measure of expertise in understanding these numbers from my job – knowing what to look for, but all these numbers are publicly available. The opinions here, obviously are my own and have nothing to do with my employer, the DHHS, or their policies.)