In a statement released today, Sanders said, "It is no secret that I have been a harsh critic of the wage and employment practices of Amazon and its owner Jeff Bezos...." Target announced earlier this year it would raise its minimum wage to $12 an hour with a plan to lift it to $15 by 2020.
The increase in pay for Amazon workers will kick in nearly immediately, with the new $15 wage beginning next month. The change applies to all "full-time, part-time, temporary (including those hired by agencies), and seasonal employees" who are based in the US.
In addition to committing to higher minimum pay, Amazon says it will "work with policymakers in Washington, D.C., to advocate for a higher federal minimum wage". In the US, Senator Bernie Sanders has publicly accused the company of underpaying its workers, and last month introduced a bill aimed to force Amazon to increase the amount it pays workers.
Lawmakers and unions have been calling for change at big U.S. corporations, with Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders proposing legislation nicknamed the "Bezos Bill" aimed at making them pay workers more.
Amid increasing public pressure, Amazon has announced it will be raising the minimum wage of all its employees in the U.S.to at least $15 an hour.
The online retailer made the announcement Tuesday. The bill, which had no chance of passing and was created to draw attention to Sanders' Amazon criticism, would tax large companies for every dollar their workers receive in safety net benefits like food stamps.
Continue reading for more reactions to Amazon's new minimum wage.
After weeks of hammering Amazon for its treatment of its warehouse workers, U.S. Sen.
Amazon, which became the second company to cross $1 trillion market value last month, on average paid employees $34,123 a year ago in the United States. As Reason's Zuri Davis reported, the avowed democratic socialist has hammered Amazon in recent months for not paying its workers enough. Already, several states and cities have raised their minimum wages above the federal one.
A Freedom of Information request to ambulance services from the GMB Union found ambulances had been called 600 times to attend Amazon warehouses across the United Kingdom in the past three years.
The $15 per hour wage will include all types of employee: full-time, part-time, seasonal and temporary.