75th Anniversary Of FLSA Highlights Need For Increase In Minimum Wage

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Enacted in 1938, the FLSA provides certain minimum wage and overtime standards that apply to nearly all U.S. employers. The act covers areas such as child labor labor laws, minimum wage and overtime. Despite significant improvements in working conditions much work still needs to be done.

In fact as noted in a previous overtime violations post, the number of overtime compensation violations has reached near epidemic proportions.

The FLSA provides that all non-exempt workers must be received overtime pay at a rate of one and one-half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in any one work week. If you believe that you have not received all the wages you are entitled to, please contact the knowledgeable Atlanta wage and hour attorneys.

Further, despite the requirement that all employees be paid at least minimum wage, the set rate of $7.25 remains too low for many to make ends meet.

In his State of the Union, President Obama simply stated: “in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty.” He noted that over the past three decades, the minimum wage has failed to keep pace with inflation – eroding its value for working families. “A full-time worker making the minimum wage now earns only $14,500 a year – leaving a family with two kids below the poverty line even once tax credits are taken into account.”

In order to put value back into the “minimum wage” provisions, President Obama has called on Congress to increase the minimum was, and tie it to inflation. Although critics of raising the minimum wage argue it’s hard on employers, studies have shown that increasing the minimum wage actually improves the economy by putting more money into the pockets of consumers, who then spend that money in their local communities.

Another significant benefit of raising the minimum wage – reducing inequality. Studies have shown that at least 10 to 20 percent of the increase in income disparity since 1980 is connected to the erosion of the minimum wage due to inflation.

As Georgia wage and hour attorneys dedicated to improving working conditions, we are hopeful that efforts to increase the minimum wage are successful.