American Psychologist, Vol 70(6), Sep 2015, 557-565.
The field of psychology has periodically used its professional and scholarly platform to encourage national policy reform that promotes the public interest. In this article, the movement to raise the federal minimum wage is presented as an issue meriting attention from the psychological profession. Psychological support for minimum wage reform derives from health disparities research that supports the causal linkages between poverty and diminished physical and emotional well-being. Furthermore, psychological scholarship relevant to the social exclusion of low-income people not only suggests additional benefits of financially inclusive policymaking, it also indicates some of the attitudinal barriers that could potentially hinder it. Although the national living wage debate obviously extends beyond psychological parameters, psychologists are well-positioned to evaluate and contribute to it.
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