Milwaukee Ald. Johnson: Statement on Advocate Aurora Health wage increases to $15 per hour

I commend Advocate Aurora Health’s recent decision to increase the minimum wage for its employees to $15.00 per hour by 2021. Advocate Aurora Health now joins the many other private companies in the United States such as Amazon, Target, and Aetna Inc. who have decided to ensure that their employees earn a living wage.

Advocate Aurora Health plans to increase wages to $13.00 per hour in mid-2019, $14.00 per hour in early 2020, and $15.00 by 2021. This strategy establishes a stable and well-charted plan in order to invest in the health provider’s most valuable resource: its employees.

With so many people struggling to make ends meet and some even working multiple jobs, it’s heartening to learn that Wisconsin’s largest private employer will be raising wages for employees. With a significant number of people spending an outsized portion of their income on housing, this investment in people should help to further stabilize families, homes, neighborhoods, and our city.

The current Wisconsin minimum wage of $7.25 per hour is unacceptable and does not allow for hardworking residents to sufficiently pay for their basic expenses. The Milwaukee Bucks’ recent decision to also increase wages for contractors to $15.00 per hour is an encouraging sign that private businesses in Milwaukee truly care about their workers and believe in every employee’s right to a living wage.

I will continue to push for increased wages in the City of Milwaukee and fight to ensure that all working residents earn enough to provide for themselves and their families.

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