SEATTLE (WTVC) — Amazon announced Tuesday it is increasing its minimum wage to $15 for all full-time, part-time, temporary (including those hired by agencies), and seasonal employees across the U.S., effective November 1. That more than doubles the minimum wage of $7.25 that the company set nearly a decade ago.
The company says this new wage will benefit more than 250,000 Amazon employees, as well as over 100,000 seasonal employees who will be hired at Amazon sites across the country this holiday season.
“We listened to our critics, thought hard about what we wanted to do, and decided we want to lead,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO. “We’re excited about this change and encourage our competitors and other large employers to join us.”
Amazon says its public policy team will also begin advocating for an increase in the federal minimum wage.
“We will be working to gain Congressional support for an increase in the federal minimum wage," said Jay Carney, Senior Vice President of Amazon Global Corporate Affairs. “We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country.”
Pay for workers at Amazon can vary by location. Its starting pay is $10 an hour at a warehouse in Austin, Texas, and $13.50 an hour in Robbinsville, New Jersey. The median pay for an Amazon employee last year was $28,446, according to government filings, which includes full-time, part-time and temporary workers.
It remains to be seen how this move will affect Amazon's competitors.
A move that could easily accelerate the decline of Amazon's brick & mortar competitors, pressured to do the same, but many don't have the margins to do it.— Steve Faktor (@ideafaktory) October 2, 2018
Likely, monopoly, automation and importation will be the big winners as we move towards higher minimum wages. https://t.co/qsoJRiYqut
Walmart made a similar move for its employees back in January, raising its starting salary for new employees to $11/hour.
Amazon says employees will continue to receive benefits, including:
Comprehensive healthcare, including medical, dental, and vision coverage
Amazon has more than 575,000 employees globally.
To find out more about the new Amazon $15 minimum wage, <b>go here</b>.