Hobby Lobby announced that as of Oct. 1, 2020, the company will increase its minimum wage for all full-time employees to $17 an hour.
Founded in 1972, the arts, crafts and home decor retail chain first established a minimum hourly wage above the federal requirement in 2009. Over the past 11 years, it has raised wages 10 times. In 2014, when the federal minimum wage became $7.25 an hour, Hobby Lobby set its minimum wage at $15 an hour for full-time employees, and it had remained there until now.
Hobby Lobby founder and CEO David Green says that the chain works hard to take care of employees and aims to be a leader in the retail sector.
“From closing our stores on Sundays and at 8 p.m. the rest of the week, to providing some of the best pay and benefits in the retail industry, we are thankful that we are able to share our success with our valued employees and provide time for rest, family and worship,” Green said in a statement. “These investments allow Hobby Lobby to attract and retain a great group of associates who in turn help provide the wonderfully unique shopping experience enjoyed by our many loyal customers.”
“Because this year has presented so many challenges to our employees, we are very happy that we are able to provide pay increases to thousands of our associates before the Christmas season,” Green added.
The retailer is currently hiring at its 923 stores across the United States. Along with above-average wages, employees receive a 15% off store discount, medical benefits, company-matched 401(k), vacation and PTO.
Other retail chains have increased wages for hourly workers in recent months as well. In June, Target raised its minimum wage to $15 an hour, and Costco increased its starting hourly wage from $14 to $15 an hour in March.
A 2017 study by the National Low Income Housing Coalition showed that the average American household needs to earn at least $21.21 per hour to afford to rent a two-bedroom apartment.