DC Government Drove Grocery Stores from Poor Neighborhoods | Economics21:
"The Washington Post devoted one of its front-page news stories to complaining about the lack of supermarkets in poor neighborhoods of the Nation’s Capital.
Entitled “As D.C. Prospers, Supermarkets Proliferate — Except In Poor Areas,” it quoted Theresa Stephens, an Anacostia resident, saying “We’ve got nothing over here. They’re overlooking us.”
Although Ms. Stephens is referring to the supermarkets, the people who are overlooking her are the D.C. government, whose decision to raise the minimum wage in 2014 prompted Walmart to rethink its planned stores in low-income DC neighborhoods.
Over half of Walmart’s sales are in groceries.
No doubt Washington’s high minimum wage, which will rise to $12.50 on Saturday, has also discouraged other grocery stores from opening.
Recall that in 2011 Walmart announced plans to open six stores, including one on Alabama Avenue Southeast, close to where Ms. Stephens lives.
The minimum wage was then $8.25 an hour.
In January 2014 the D.C. government passed a bill that raised the wage incrementally to $11.50 an hour in 2016.
Shortly after the law was signed, Walmart pulled out of four stores in low-income neighborhoods..."