On March 2, the minimum wage increase in Oakland takes effect, and small business owners across the city are getting ready. Oakland will have the highest minimum wage in the country at $12.25 (though Emeryville is attempting to raise their minimum wage as high as $14/hour and San Francisco’s will increase to $12.25 on May 1). The discussion from Oakland small businesses about this increase has been mostly positive.
Actual Cafe owner Sal Bednarz wrote a thoughtful and thorough piece for Oakland Local, discussing how he sees the minimum wage increase. The piece is supportive of the policy change, and he takes the time to acknowledge the challenge that his businesses will face:
“Here’s the hard part: I’m in a low-margin business, and have cost pressures from all sides (from customers, landlords, utility providers, staff, vendors: you name the source, and there’s pressure coming from it). I’ve chosen a business in which making a living requires constant adaptation and adjustment, creativity and critical thinking, and dogged persistence. Lucky for me, I’m capable of those things, and I think that I’ll find a way to adapt to a different wage structure.”
Businesses like Actual Cafe, Caffe 817, Manifesta, and Beauty’s Bagel Shop shared the same message on Facebook, informing their customers and Facebook fans ahead of time about the changes their businesses will make to adapt to the wage increase:
“For those who don’t know, on March 2nd the minimum wage in Oakland will increase from $9/hour to $12.25/hour, which will be the highest in the country! We supported this measure and are happy to pay our employees a living wage. What this means for us and other independently-owned, low margin food businesses is an increase in prices. Thank you for your continued support during this unprecedented and rapid shift. We are happy to be part of the fabric of Oakland! #oaklandlivingwage”
Others like The New Parkway and Nick’s Pizza shared their own personalized messages, supporting the policy. The New Parkway took the time to discuss where their customers will see price changes and why.
There are a lot of changes to laws and regulations for small businesses in 2015. OBDC is here to help our borrowers navigate how to implement the changes in their businesses. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to set up time to come in for a free consultation.
Tell us what you think about the new minimum wage on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OBDCSmallBusinessFinance