It is difficult to decide between minimum and livable wages. This raises questions about fairness and justice. A fundamental principle of fairness and justice is the notion that an individual working full-time shouldn’t be in poverty. Unjust to expect a worker to be able afford to eat, house, or pay healthcare, despite their hard work.
This issue can be addressed by the principle of distributive justice. The principle of distributive justice states that all citizens should have equal access to resources. A minimum wage lower than a living wage could be considered unjust because it fails to provide workers the basic resources they need.
Social contract theory, another principle which relates to the issue of this question is also important. According to social contract theory, society can be formed when its members agree to forgo certain rights in return for security and protection provided by the government. It could also be said that each individual has a moral duty to ensure that society is able to provide for its basic needs. A minimum wage lower than a living wage could be considered unfair, and therefore a breach of the social agreement.
In the context of the fast food industry, the article “Justice and Fairness – Wages in the Fast Food Industry” highlights the issue of low wages and poor working conditions in this sector. According to the article, fast food workers tend to be low-wage and often don’t earn enough money for themselves or their families. To ensure workers can make a living wage, it is important to raise the minimum wage.
The ethical principle that someone should live in poverty despite working full time is fundamental to justice and fairness. It is unfair for someone to be able work hard and still have to pay the minimum wage to get food, housing, or healthcare. It would be unjust to have a minimum wage below the livable wage. The state has a moral responsibility to make sure that everyone in its community can afford basic necessities.