Local businesses say minimum wage increase could cost consumers

Workers are making a new push to raise the state's minimum wage to $15 an hour

Photo: Thinkstock
Photo: Thinkstock

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Workers across Massachusetts have been making a new push this week to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour.

The state’s minimum wage is already set to rise to $11 on January 1st, but some workers said it’s not enough, and local businesses told 22News the four dollar increase could have an impact.

Matthew Seymour, a college student who makes $12 an hour working part time, said he could see the benefit; “There definitely is a lot of debt that goes along with college, so being able to make more money once you graduate is definitely encouraging.”

However, Seymour recognizes that raising the minimum wage, could raise costs for consumers; “Raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour is gonna increase prices of everything really.”

Nadim Kashouh, owner of Nadim’s Mediterranean Restaurant in Springfield, said he agrees; “Eventually somebody has to pay that increase you know, and we are a for-profit business and we can’t just not make profit. In turn we definitely have to put the pay raise, it reflects in our menu prices.”

The group “Raise Up Massachusetts” is working on a proposal to raise the minimum wage by four dollars over the next several years.

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