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Hobby Lobby raises minimum wage to over $18 an hour

Hobby Lobby
Posted at 1:45 PM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-14 16:17:50-05

OKLAHOMA CITY — Hobby Lobby Stores announced Tuesday it will be raising its minimum wage for full-time workers to $18.50 an hour, effective January 1, 2022.

The news comes on the heels of previous wage hike increases, with Hobby Lobby having raised it 12 times over the last 13 years. In 2014, the company, which has 10 stores in Utah, raised its minimum wage to $15, now considered a growing standard for retailers. Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson proposed a $15 raise for county workers as part of her 2022 budget to support a "living wage" for permanent, full-time workers, as part of an effort to help people seek affordable housing.

An executive order from the Biden Administration raised the minimum wage to $15 for federal contractors, but the federal minimum wage remains at $7.25, where it has stagnated since 2009.

“We have a long track record of taking care of our employees,” said Hobby Lobby founder and CEO, David Green. "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.”

Employers are realizing that the "Great Resignation" is pushing them to raise rates to attract viable candidates. Record numbers are quitting their jobs, and while many can be attributable to COVID-19 related causes (a reduced availability of child care and school closings) it's also believed that the sheer number of openings have led employees to be more selective about there they work.

Among the larger retailers raising their minimum wages are retail giant Costco, which raised its minimum wage to $17, and T-Mobile, which announced an increase to $20 on December 10 for every employee, regardless of whether they are part-time or full-time.

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney co-sponsored a bill with Sen.Tom Cotton of Arkansas to raise the federal minimum wage to $10. The Biden administration and Senate Democrats have pushed for an increase to $15.