Target Says It Will Raise Minimum Wage to $15 per Hour Next Month

June 17, 2020 Updated: June 17, 2020

Retailer Target on Wednesday said it will permanently raise its minimum wage by $2 to $15 per hour across the United States.

The changes will be implemented next month, the Minneapolis-based firm confirmed in a statement. It will also offer a one-time “recognition bonus” of $200 for workers for their performance during the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus pandemic.

“In the best of times, our team brings incredible energy and empathy to our work, and in harder times they bring those qualities plus extraordinary resilience and agility to keep Target on the forefront of meeting the changing needs of our guests and our business year after year,” said Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target Corporation, in the statement.

He added: “Everything we aspire to do and be as a company builds on the central role our team members play in our strategy, their dedication to our purpose and the connection they create with our guests and communities.”

Target said in 2017 that it would be raising its minimum wage to $15 at the end of 2020, but now, it will go into effect on July 4. Target raised its minimum wage to $13 per hour last year.

The firm said the new wage policy will affect about 275,000 employees across the nation.

The federal government’s minimum wage is set at $7.25 per hour, and it was last increased in 2009. Some cities and states have set wages higher than the federal government’s requirement.

“These investments help ensure that team members can build meaningful careers, take care of themselves and their families and contribute to building our communities through their work inside and outside of Target,” Target Chief Human Resources Officer Melissa Kremer said in the statement.

Target remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic, and has seen online sales skyrocket more than 275 percent in April, according to reports.

Looters rob a Target store
Looters rob a Target store as protesters face off against police in Oakland, Calif., on May 30, 2020. (Josh Edelson/AFP via Getty Images)

Last month, Target workers in Minnesota walked off the job due to the CCP virus pandemic.

“We are at high risk of exposure to this virus,” Adam Ryan of Target Workers Unite told CBS Minnesota. “We contend that even though Target is making these announcements that they are taking further safety precautions and compensating us, it’s really just smoke and mirrors.”

Last month, during riots in Minneapolis, a Target was looted and ransacked, prompting the firm to shut down about 175 stores nationwide in response to the unrest. Targets in other cities, including Oakland, were also looted.

“We are heartbroken by the death of George Floyd and the pain it is causing communities across the country,” wrote Target in a press statement. It added: “We have made the decision to close a number of our stores…Our focus will remain on our team members’ safety and helping our community heal.”