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Careful what you ask for! Workers get $15 minimum wage, beg for fewer hours to keep welfare

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View_Seattle_Pike_Place_Market_sign_summer_2010An unintended consequence of Seattle’s plan to give every worker a “living wage” exposed some employees’ not-so-secret motivation: they want more money, but they don’t want to work for it.

Seattle workers who celebrated the city’s $15 an hour minimum wage are now asking for fewer hours so they can keep their welfare benefits, Fox Orlando reported Thursday.

Home nursing nonprofit Full Life Care told KIRO-TV that several workers have asked for fewer hours.

“If they cut down their hours to stay on those subsidies because the $15 per hour minimum wage didn’t actually help get them out of poverty,” said KIRO-FM radio host Jason Rantz, “all you’ve done is put a burden on the business and given false hope to a lot of people.”

Statistics provide more evidence.  Washington’s Basic Food program enrollment fell by only 475 cases when the higher wage began in Seattle in April, despite a strong economy throughout western Washington, Fox Orlando reported.

With some restaurants tacking on a 15 percent surcharge, the higher wage hurts consumers the most.

“It’s what happens when the government imposes a restriction on the labor market that normally wouldn’t be there, and marginal businesses get hit the hardest, and usually those are small, neighborhood businesses,” said Paul Guppy, of the Washington Policy Center.

In reality, it’s what happens when liberals have their way without considering the consequences of giving workers a free lunch.

Steve Berman


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