The decision to increase the minimum wage in Seattle may be leading to less hygienic restaurants in the city, according to a working paper from a group of economists.
A trio of professors at Ball State, Villanova, and Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) tracked the change in health code violations reported in Washington state’s King County, where Seattle is located, since the city raised the minimum wage.
The researchers told NPR on Wednesday that because different parts of King County raised the minimum wage at different times, they were able to track the violations in Seattle as the minimum wage changed in each area. Seattle’s minimum went from about $8 an hour in 2010 to about $13-$15 an hour this year.
“We find an increase in real minimum wage by $0.10 increased total hygiene violation scores by 11.45 percent,” the professors wrote.
So people economise on the employment of more costly labour, do they?
Heavens To Betsy, who would have thought it?