Massachusetts enacts law raising minimum wage to $15

June 29 (UPI) — Massachusetts will progressively raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 per hour.

Gov. Charlie Baker signed legislation Thursday to hike the wage from its current level of $11 per hour.

Under the new law, Massachusetts’ wage will increase to $15 by 2023 — a pace similar to California’s, which will top out at the same rate in 2022.

The first hike will start in January.

The law also says workers will receive time-and-a-half pay on Sundays and holidays, and gratuity workers’ hourly wages will rise to $6.75.

The measure also creates a paid family and medical leave program to be funded with payroll taxes — allowing employees to take 12 weeks a year to care for a family member or care for a new child, 20 weeks to deal with a personal medical issue and 26 weeks to care for an injured service member.

Baker thanked the parties for finding a compromise.

A national movement to raise minimum wages in a number of states has been going for years. So far, Massachusetts and California are the only ones to go to $15. The federal minimum wage is at $7.25, but hasn’t changed since 2009.

Massachusetts, California, Washington, Arizona, Vermont and New York currently have the highest minimum wage rates in the United States.

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