1,300 local Walmart employees see pay increases

Grants Pass, Ore. — Some 1,300 Walmart employees in Medford and Grants Pass are taking home larger paychecks this week. It’s part of a nation-wide wage increase, the largest private sector raise ever.

“When they come to Walmart, it’s a place where you can earn a living,” Grants Pass store manager Bronson Charette said. “To be able to sit down with them one on one has been great, they’ve been very excited.”

Beginning on Wednesday, Walmart employees from across the country, to right here in Southern Oregon, will be bringing home a larger pay check. The average employee will notice an  hourly increase from $12.88 to $13.48 an hour.

Employees hired before January will earn $10 an hour, and those already earning ten dollars an hour will see their annual pay increase this month. New managers coming in will see even more.

“The associates are a priority, and I think that that’s important for the future, because it gives them the idea that they’re going to be supported even 10, 20, 30 years from now,” Charette said.

It’s part of a two year investment by the company, giving employees higher wages, more training, and cash benefits. Charette says it’s not only the employees that benefit from the changes; everything from the economy to the customers will being seeing a difference.

“As Walmart is constantly improving and doing things for associates that benefit them, it’s making them more compelled to give greater service, and I’m seeing it even here in the store.”

In Oregon alone, $2.25 million dollars will be distributed as a cash bonus.

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