Raising minimum wage won’t lead to job losses

In his Jan. 22 Another Voice about the minimum wage increase, Michael Saltsman makes claims that are contradicted by a wide array of important economic studies, and hides the fact that his organization funded the very study that he cites as “scholarly” evidence for his point. Saltsman works for a restaurant industry front group, the Employment Policies Institute. The institute funded a study by David Neumark and Ian Salas claiming that increases in the minimum wage lead to job losses – and criticizing the findings of much-cited research by other economists that finds that raising the minimum wage does not cost jobs.

Their conclusions fly in the face of the most modern economic methods. In contrast to their argument, it is perfectly appropriate to compare neighboring counties and neighboring states when assessing the impact of economic policies that vary from state to state. This approach is used widely in the economic literature. And, indeed, the weight of recent research shows that minimum wage increases in the United States have not led to job losses.

Paul Sonn

Legal Co-director

National Employment Law Project