The low-cost chain Costco announced on Thursday, in the midst of a debate in Congress on whether or not to raise the minimum hourly wage in the United States, that it would increase the minimum pay paid to its American employees to 16 dollars an hour.
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This increase will be applied from next week, said its managing director Craig Jelinek during a hearing in Congress devoted to the low salaries paid by large groups.
Costco, which employs 180,000 people in the United States, has paid them at least $ 15 an hour for two years.
The two-dollar bonus paid since the start of the pandemic will be abolished, said Craig Jelinek.
But including bonuses and not counting overtime, Costco employees in the United States are paid an average of $ 24 per hour, he said.
The announcement comes as Joe Biden's proposal to double the country's minimum wage to $ 15 an hour by 2025 has become a thorny point in negotiations over the country's massive plan to support the economy. American president.
Other large groups like the Target supermarket chain or the e-commerce giant Amazon already offer $ 15 an hour.
Walmart, the largest private employer in the country, for its part announced last week that it would increase the wages of nearly half a million
in the United States to reach
"an average greater ”
than $ 15 an hour.
A “carefully weighed” measure
The employers' organization Business Roundtable said Tuesday in a letter to parliamentarians that any decision on an increase in the minimum wage must
"be carefully weighed in order to reflect regional differences in wage levels and not hinder the recovery of small businesses"
Paying employees properly or providing them with decent health insurance
"is not altruism,"
said the head of Costco according to the text of his speech before the parliamentary committee.
“This helps us in the long term by minimizing turnover and improving employee productivity, engagement and loyalty,”