Economically, it works. Affirming what fast-food workers have long argued, a newly-released paper, "A $15 Minimum Wage: How the Fast-Food Industry Could Adjust Without Shedding Jobs," confirms that raising the minimum wage to $15 can be accomplished.
The paper, written by Robert Pollin, professor of economics at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute and Jeannette Wicks-Lim, a PERI research assistant professor, charts the potential impact of increasing the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour.
Combining previous studies' data and U.S. Economic Census surveys, the paper determined that the impact of higher pay on the fast-food industry over the course of four year wouldn't even effect the bottom-line, according to Common Dream. And the conclusion: the industry "could absorb the increase in its overall wage bill without resorting to cuts in their employment levels at any point over this four-year adjustment period."
The paper stated that raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour is possible by "a combination of turnover reductions; trend increases in sales growth; and modest annual price increases over the four-year period."
As the movement of fast-food workers continues to gain momentum through strikes and protests, their argument was affirmed through economic research. Not only is it doable, it is affordable across the entire fast-food industry.