Minimum Wage Impacts Students

Aly McGinnes, Staff

The minimum wage in Washington State will be increasing by $4.03 and students at Puyallup High School are questioning whether the minimum wage increase is really necessary considering the consequences which may come along with it.
Although there may be consequences, some students believe that the increase will benefit more people, especially those who have to support their own families.
“The increase will make life better. Some people need to support their families and some people may be working overtime, which will make them spend less time with their families, just so they can earn enough money to get through their life,” junior Cassandra Madrigal said.
The current minimum wage in Washington State is $9.47 per hour and will increase to $13.50 per hour by the year 2020. A former Business and Marketing student, junior Danielle Vanderville thinks that the increase will be a good thing, depending on the company.
“Depending on what the business is and who the people are, I think the minimum wage increase is a good thing. It will benefit a lot of people who are older and have to pay rent or tend to families,” Vanderville said.
Even though a lot of people believe that the increase will help out families, some argue whether the increase is a good thing. Junior Alannah Johnson has been working for three months and does not agree with the increase.
“I think the current minimum wage is good where it is at. I am doing well with it. It is just weird seeing it raised. I talked to my grandma and she said that she would get paid $1.50 an hour. So now, where it is in the $9 range, it is just such a big difference. I think if we went back to how my grandma had it, people would learn more how to manage their money to not spend it on random things,” Johnson said.
Madrigal, who has been working for 11 months now, believes that the increase will be a good thing for high school students, including herself.
“I think it will be a good thing for high school students. They may realize that they can get a job for minimum wage, which will be more money. Then, they will not have to work as long every day. They will only have to work for a couple of hours to get more money,” Madrigal said.
Unlike Madrigal, Johnson believes that the increase will not be a good thing for students.
“High school students will spend all their money on random stuff they do not need. They should be saving it for something in the future that could possibly help them. All that money now could even help them now but a lot of them will just spend it because they think they have so much money now,” Johnson said.
Another thing that is making students question the increase, is if everyday items like food and clothing will become more expensive. We may not know until the increase takes effect but that does not stop people from thinking it is a good idea.
“I think the increase will be a better step for this country,” Madrigal said.