Arkansas Children’s Hospital is increasing the minimum wage for its employees, an official said on Monday.
The hospital plans to raise its minimum wage for entry-level positions to $14 per hour starting on Jan. 1, Hillary H. DeMillo, a spokeswoman, said in an email. The increase, up from the current wage of $10.10 per hour, was approved by the health system’s board of directors.
DeMillo said the board had “prioritized ensuring all employees earn a living wage.”
Although DeMillo could not confirm the number of employees affected by the wage increase, she said Arkansas Children’s employs roughly 4,300 people across the state.
In a statement, Arkansas Children’s President and CEO Marcy Doderer said the increase was an investment that would help team members to better care for sick and hurt children.
“In order to take care of our most vulnerable populations, our board of directors saw it as fundamental to take care of our team by offering this living wage,” Doderer said. “We want our employees to feel like their paycheck can take care of them and their families.”
The pay increase comes amid several moves to increase the minimum wage in Arkansas and across the country. Issue 5, which Arkansans will vote on in this year’s election, would gradually raise minimum-wage requirements across the state to $11 an hour by 2021. Earlier this month, tech giant Amazon announced it would raise its own minimum wage to $15 an hour for all employees.