MINIMUM WAGE, EQUAL PAY, WORKPLACE EQUALITY

I agree that workers should not be exploited. However, there is a place for minimum wage. There must be a reasoned wage platform which allows some people to learn compatibility with company standards and performance. Minimum wage gives people an opportunity to earn some money as they develop their work skills. Entry level or “bottom-rung” positions might be considered on-the-job training. They are not meant as long-term positions. The wage should be equal to the value an employee offers the employer.

Employees moving into an industry with which they are unfamiliar or others who have little skill, knowledge or motivation may also fall onto that platform. There are also people who use the base wage as a springboard to demonstrate how they can perform and prove their value to an employer. The skilled and motivated might use the lower-rung positions as temporary or transitional subsistence until a job opens that is more compatible with their abilities and worthiness.

At any rate, minimum wage jobs are not, and never have been, meant to support a family or even an individual long-term.

With the argument for minimum wage out of the way, let us move on to equal pay for equal work. This request or mandate is usually presented by women and minorities. And they are right! There should never be a disparity in pay between people performing the same job at the same performance level no matter what their gender, perceived gender, desired gender, race, ethnicity, religious background, belief system or any other quality or notable characteristic. And, with few exceptions, this rarely occurs in the workplace.

Employers generally want the best possible person in the most suitable position. This maximizes the output of the individual employee and that of the company. Intelligent employers do not want a valued employee disgruntled enough to cause an undercurrent that disconcerts the workplace or one who leaves the company with ill feelings. The last thing they want is for a worthy employee to defect for employment with a competitor. Employers, managers or supervisors will do what is necessary to protect his or her workers from dissatisfaction. If that means raising pay or benefits for merit or performance, that is what generally happens. Thus, it is possible and correct for two people working side-by-side, at the same task, to receive different compensation.

The same basic rule applies to workplace equality. Except for irrational bigotry on behalf of senior staff, there is rarely cause for inequality in the workplace. There are various, and often overlapping, government agencies to remedy such occurrences. Most states have agencies to mitigate offending circumstances within the workplace. They may be called Labor Relations Board, Labor and Workforce Development Agency or other such names, but they are in place to protect workers.

On the federal level there are the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the National Labor Relations Board, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration and for the health and safety of workers there is the Occupational Health and Safety Administration. Remedies abound.

No employer wants to suffer excessive fines imposed by the above listed agencies for actions that may occur from discontent among employees and/or senior staff. Very few are willing to chance the outcome by these liberal oversight agencies prone to act on behalf of the employee.

So basically, I guess what I’m saying is “Quit your whining and take control of your life rather than complaining, blaming and waiting for someone to make your stay on this planet better for you. If you don’t like your job or employer or don’t feel you’re being treated fairly, leave.” Why would any sane and intelligent person want to remain in an untenable situation?

No matter what the current crop of politicians propose, we don’t need any more duplication of services or any new government agencies to carelessly waste the precious tax dollars of those producing them.

We do need producers who are willing to apply themselves for just consideration. The workplace is not an extension of public education.  Work cannot be compared to regurgitating what the teacher or professor imprinted on your mind. It takes desire and effort to succeed and prosper in the real world.

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6 Responses to “MINIMUM WAGE, EQUAL PAY, WORKPLACE EQUALITY”

  1. jkiraly@cox.net Says:

    A very good commentary on the subject of minimum wage. Many of today’s workers want top pay for bottom performance. Many did not finish HS or paid little attention in HS and were socially promoted, got married too young, etc. Many can’t make change, if in a retail or fast food environment, etc., or do not have proper language skills, to name a few.. Too many want the Government to take care of them, not realizing they will eventually give up their freedom to get their handout. They will find they are on the “Man’s” plantation and must do as required by the “Man” to get their handouts. They may not who they are beholding to for their existence. Many complain about past slavery of ancestors, not realizing within one or two generations they will be the slaves. .

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