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Arkansas

Mercy Hospital raises starting wage for workers amid Covid-19 pandemic

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Mercy Hospital announced that they will increase the starting wage for workers to $15 per hours and this will cost the hospital more than $18 million per year.

The raise will start from September and the workers will see the increase on their October paycheck.

The St. Louis-based health system is operating in three states so far including Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma and more than 6,000 employees will see the increase.

“This decision is rooted in our values and promotes the common good for our co-workers and the communities where they serve,” said Lynn Britton, Mercy president and CEO. “We decided to make the transition immediately, rather than in stages because this critical decision can positively affect so many lives and families.”

Among the 6,000 employees that will see the benefits of the increase are housekeepers, food service, transportation and pharmacy, medical and lab technicians. The company said in an announcement that these groups of workers are vital for the to providing care and health care service.

Currently, the percentage of jobs under $15 in all three is above 40%. According to the data provided by the company, 47.4% in Arkansas, 43.8% in Oklahoma, and 41.6% in Missouri are currently under the $15 wage and all of these workers will see the increase.

In addition to raising wages of co-workers making less than $15 an hour, Mercy said it will continue to review co-worker pay across all communities and job descriptions and adjust accordingly.

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