Hobby Lobby is joining other retailers in raising its minimum wage.
The Oklahoma City-based arts and crafts chain will offer full-time starting pay of $18.50 per hour to its employees beginning Jan. 1, 2022. In 2014, the company set its minimum wage at $15 per hour. In October 2020, Hobby Lobby raised its minimum wage to $17 per hour.
In addition to the $18.50 minimum wage, Hobby Lobby will continue to offer medical, prescription and dental insurance, a 401(k), a flexible spending plan, long-term disability benefits, life insurance, vacation pay, personal paid time off benefits with annual buyback, holiday pay, chaplain services, and an employee discount.
"We have a long track record of taking care of our employees," Hobby Lobby founder and CEO David Green said in a statement. "In 1998, we made the decision to close our stores on Sundays, and at 8 p.m. the rest of the week, to provide employees time for rest, family and worship. We’ve also worked hard over the years to provide the best pay and benefits in retail, which has allowed us to attract and retain an outstanding group of associates to serve our devoted customers. We are thankful for our success as a company and thrilled to begin the new year by sharing that success with thousands of our employees."
While the federal minimum wage has stood at $7.25 since 2009, many U.S. cities, states and counties have taken it upon themselves to establish their own minimum pay increases.
The move comes after Walgreens previously announced an hourly starting pay increase to $15, which will be fully implemented across the country by Nov. 1, 2022, while Costco reportedly raised its minimum wage to $17 per hour in October.
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Starbucks' U.S. workers will also earn at least $15 an hour – and up to $23 per hour by next summer. In late January, employees with two or more years of service will get a 5% raise, while those with five or more years of service could receive up to a 10% raise.
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