Advocate Aurora Health, the country’s 10th largest health system, announced on Thursday in an internal memo to its employees that the company plans to gradually increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2021.
Advocate Aurora Health was formed back in April of 2018 through the merger of Advocate Health Care (headquartered in Downers Grove, Illinois) and Aurora Health (headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin). In Wisconsin, Advocate Aurora Health is the largest private employer in the state.
In Illinois, the current state minimum wage is $8.25. In Wisconsin, the minimum wage matches the minimum federal wage of $7.25.
According to the internal memo, Advocate Aurora Health will raise its minimum wage to $13 my mid 2019, $14 by 2020 reaching $15 per hour by 2021.
The move should come at no surprise. In fact, the raises announced on Thursday were in line with the minimum wage requirements the City of Chicago has also announced for the next three years.
Approximately 15,000 Advocate Aurora Health employees will be positively impacted by the recent announcement.
Below is a copy of the memo shared with all Advocate Aurora Health employees last Thursday:
“Our purpose is to help people live well and that begins with our own team members. To that end, I’m pleased to share the news that Advocate Aurora Health is increasing our minimum wage to $15/hour by early 2021, with plans calling for $13/hr in mid 2019 and $14/hr in early 2020.
As one of the largest not-for-profit employers in Illinois and Wisconsin, this decision aligns with our longstanding commitment to be market competitive and remain a place that attracts and retains top talent. Our goal is to be a destination employer where our team members feel valued, have opportunities for growth and connect with our values and purpose-driven culture.
Competitive wages are just one aspect of the comprehensive approach we’ve taken to compensation and benefits. Other key components of total compensation include education assistance, a retirement savings program, discounted medical and drug coverage and career advancement initiatives. We know that if our team members feel this is the best place to work, our patients will feel this is the best place to entrust their health and wellness.
While we continue to face shrinking reimbursements and soaring pharmaceutical costs, we see this as a critical investment in our most valued resource: you. Continuing to ensure that our team members have access to rewarding jobs with comprehensive benefits, competitive wages and an engaging work environment will not only strengthen our workplace, it will strengthen our marketplace and most importantly, enhance the quality of life in our communities from Green Bay to Bloomington Normal and everywhere in between.
We are proud to be an industry leader in advancing minimum wage. More information will be forthcoming in Spring 2019 in advance of the planned increase. We will keep you updated.”