Amazon on Tuesday said it will raise its minimum wage to $15 in the U.S., a response to mounting pressure over its wages and treatment of its warehouse workers.
That could be good news for numerous Internet giant's workers across North Carolina.
The new minimum wage for Amazon workers far exceeds the $7.25 federal minimum pay; Amazon says it will set the mark for more than 250,000 current employees, as well as more than 100,000 seasonal employees it plans to hire for the coming holiday season. Its starting pay is $10 an hour at a warehouse in Austin, Texas, and $13.50 an hour in Robbinsville, New Jersey. The retail giant, run by the world's richest man, was criticized earlier this year after revealing its workers' median pay was $28,446.
This minimum wage will apply to all Whole Foods employees as well. And some companies have responded to the public pressure. "The current rate of $7.25 was set almost a decade ago", Jay Carney, senior vice president of Amazon global corporate affairs, said in a statement. Some employees who already make $15 per hour will also see a pay increase. In the United States, workers will receive $15 an hour from the start of November.
But corporate profits in the US are booming, and that wealth isn't being spread out almost fast enough for many.
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"We will be working to gain congressional support for an increase in the federal minimum wage".
Workers have been protesting against fast food chains like McDonald's Corp and demanding wage increases since 2012 but conditions at Amazon's warehouses, distribution centers and for its couriers have been drawing media attention and criticism for some time.
Amazon made the announcement on a company blog this morning.
Amazon is also increasing wages in some areas outside the U.S. The company announced that the minimum wage will be 10.50 pounds an hour in London and 9.50 pounds in other parts of the UK.