I have been following the reporting and pro and cons being aired, and it seems like no one is really hitting the problem. If the employers and employees really want a living wage, the solution would be to have the employers pay the amount of welfare and food stamps to the government for all their workers who are eligible.
This would be an incentive to pay what the job is worth and keep money where it serves a purpose. A benefit would be to allow a deduction for the amount paid, and be a boost to raising wages where it would not be necessary.
I can see all sorts of yelling about this, but we all are already paying taxes for these benefits; this would pinpoint those who are not paying their share. I doubt this would ever happen, but it is a good talking point to start.