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On Tuesday, Sen. Sanders said during an interview on CNN that staffers would be paid the equivalent of at least $15 per hour. Pay will be raised from $36,000 per year to $42,000 – which is expected to bring the average up to $15 when longer hours are accounted for.
“I was insistent that everybody on our staff make at least $15 an hour, and in fact they're making $17 an hour," Sanders said. "The offer that we made to the union several months ago would have accomplished that. And I'm happy to tell you, by the way, that offer was just accepted."
Sanders added that workers will be making the equivalent of “more than $15 per hour,” and that his campaign offers one of the “best health care plans,” saying he believes it covers 100 percent of the health care costs of workers. The deal had also been previously floated to the union, but rejected, he noted.
A spokesperson for Sanders’ campaign did not immediately return FOX Business’ request for comment.
Sanders is a well-known proponent of raising the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour, which he has deemed a “livable wage.” That made the pay complaints a contentious public issue.
According to a report from The Washington Post, some field organizers – which tend to be a campaign’s lower-level workers – were being paid less than $15 per hour, on average. That was the result of long workweeks, allegedly in excess of 60 hours for some.
During an interview with the Des Moines Register last week, Sanders said it bothered him that some of his staffers were going outside of the negotiation process and talking to the media about their concerns.