Amazon will raise its minimum wage for employees to $15 (what about contractors?)

Originally published at:


It was reported on NPR this morning that the lift to $15 included all employees including contractors (i.e. Temps).


yeah, it does appear to apply to temps (contractors) as well.
at least on the surface. Hopefully that is reality.

I think all the news reports are coming from Amazon’s own blog though:


Sadly if you live in Seattle or other more expensive areas $15/hr still isn’t livable.


Why would Amazon report out “this applies to everyone” and then not let it apply to everyone?

The negative repercussions would not be worth that. If there was even a shred of doubt, the report/press release would be “We are raising the min to $15, we are still working out what associates this applies to”.


Why do you call attention to this as if that is an issue? This is how most if not all companies communicate and provide press releases and info. Via their own websites, blogs, social media accounts, etc. Then news outlets (specifically those connected to AP) verify the release or info and post their own take on it. I’m confused as to what the doubt being raised here is about.

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Ars also reported that in some areas the minimum was already above $15 and those employees will get a pay bump also.

Amazon employee pay depends heavily on location: hourly workers in some areas of the country get paid $10 per hour while others are already making more than $15 per hour (employees who fall into the latter category can expect to see a slight pay bump as well).


Let’s be honest…$15 is not a livable hourly wage on either coast. Parts of the inner area of the country, sure; but even in those cases there are areas that are closer to costs of the coastal states too.

If we wanted hourly wages to match living conditions, we would probably have to get to $20-25 per hour. Though that would have to be for full time associates only. $15 per hour for part time is absolutely acceptable and a good starting point.


Can you unpack that for me?

If someone is being paid by the hour, then their hour is worth a certain amount regardless of whether they work six hours or two.

If it’s not, they shouldn’t be paid by the hour.


I replied to the Original Post as it was written which did not include the “update” (which still questions the announcement).
The seeds of “doubt” are still in the OP.

I’ve learned my lesson and will now take Amazon Press Releases at face value and not question them or their motives.

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So you feel a teenager working 10-12 hours at McDonald’s should be paid a “living wage” the same as the 42 yr old working an hourly position in a call center at Big Bank Corp who supports a family of 4?

Wages are not one size fits all. And hourly wages are no exception. Additionally, you state this:

Wages are not determined on what the individual’s time is worth…they are determined on what the value of the work is worth. Would you pay the dishwasher in the back of the kitchen the same as the sous chef?

I have no issues with raising the minimum to $15. I also do not believe an hourly part time job should be the classification of a living wage/job.

Score one for the fear of unions.

“We intend to advocate for a minimum wage increase that will have a profound impact on the lives of tens of millions of people and families across this country,” Jay Carney, senior vice president of Amazon global corporate affairs, said in a statement.

And I believe him: now that they’ve been pressured into doing it they’ll want to make sure that all their big box and mom and pop competitors have to as well.


Very happy Bezos passed on putting Amazon 2 in San Diego.


Tucson sent him a saguaro. Honestly, I’m not sure if he knew how to take it.


I feel that they should share the same hourly pay floor. Taking McD’s as an example, if person A works 40 hours/week and person B works 10 hours/week doing the same exact job, paying person B less per hour seems like a nice loophole to let Mc D’s only hire temp workers so they can pay them less. The employees age and number of family being supported shouldn’t matter. Everyone who does the same job should be paid the same hourly wage. Time on the job/experience may warrant a raise over new employees but that’s a different matter.


So Amazon finally capitulates after years of negative press, public pressure, and failed attempts to pay their employees in bonus store credit to push back against widely reported factual allegations of worker abuse, and Bezos wants to call it “leading”.

Fuck him.


Well, I guess it’s a start. Not that they’ll do the rest on their own…


I think we completely agree. And therein is the point…this is about the minimum wage floor. Not a ceiling or guidelines around what is considered a living wage.


Or in many other parts of the country. I think we’ve now blown past the point where we should be moving to $15 for a minimum wage, to something higher.


Honestly, ideally, yes, I would want to try that.

Everyone could have the same hourly wage no matter the work they did. It would prevent CEOs from earning 1000x their lowest employee’s salary. And if it was decided that someone needed a raise to make ends meet, then everyone would get the same wage increase.

If you needed to lure people into a less appealing job, you could do so with fringe benefits instead of higher salary.

People would stop lying about their skills to get the better paying job… although they might start lying to get the nicer fringe benefits. But if those were limited to the less appealing jobs, like sewer diver, then more power to them.

It would also allow people to transition into jobs they are happier in without worrying about what it pays; eg. instead of someone staying at a job they hate for 20 years because the pay is better than they can earn doing what they would love (raises hand) they can seek out an opening in that job/field, or try something new without upending their life.

some rambling about my personal situation that you can ignore

I realize that there are people that would love my job, but I stick around because I have bills to pay. I thought I was going to finally have everything except my house paid off after this month, which would free me up to find something that pays less that I might enjoy more. That has now been pushed out by another two years at least; and who knows what’s on the horizon?

The system is rigged above and beyond in favor of the “haves” to the exclusion of everyone else.

If you get up in the morning and need to decide on which Rolex to wear that won’t clash with the car you’ll be driving that day, you are a part of the problem in my eyes.

Is it right that a mid-level NFL player can earn more in a single season than a teacher may earn in decades, no matter how good the teacher is, or how average the NFL player is?

Shit’s whack.


This does not go well with:

And the second quote is either a fairly impressive misunderstanding of what I wrote or a horrendous misstatement of what I wrote.

I stated that if you are paying someone by the hour, that indicates that the person making the payment has decided that an hour of that work is worth that amount.

As @anotherone says if two people are doing the same work, that work is worth the same regardless of the workers’ respective outgoings and situations in life.

You’ve valued the work, so pay for it.

They ought to be the same.