When humans commit crimes that land them behind bars, they have defied the sanctity of the legal and moral system so much that they do not deserve the same rights as law-abiding citizens.
Therefore, any jobs offering a minimum wage should be first filled by free citizens before inmates have access to them. Morally, it’s unfair for a citizen who follows the rules to not have a minimum wage job while someone who has broken the rules does.
While incarcerated, the government and the taxpayer are providing food, shelter, and clothing to inmates, so they do not have the same expenses necessary for earning a minimum wage.
The fairest way to dole out inmate jobs are through a free market system, where the inmate willing to work for the least amount of money gets the job.
The prison system does not have enough money to operate as is. Prisons should cut costs in all available areas, including payment for jobs.
Inmates should not be rewarded with a minimum-wage level job for breaking the law.
If former inmates run into money problems later in life, they may be more likely to commit a crime knowing they could have a job in prison.
Allowing inmates to build up significant savings could promote black markets in jails if inmates have more disposable income.