Boston Medical Center will raise minimum wage to $15 an hour

Starting in January 2016, about 200 workers at Boston Medical Center will be paid a minimum starting wage of $15.12 an hour.

The deal was struck between the hospital and the service, clerical, and technical workers of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East and AFSCME Council 93 on Tuesday, making Boston Medical the first hospital in Boston to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour, according to a statement from the union.

“Winning $15/hour is a huge step for me towards a more stable future and it really shows the difference that having a union makes,’’ Douglas Forrester, a four-year employee at the hospital as a general cleaner and 1199SEIU member, said in a statement. “ … I want to help spread the word so every hospital employee like me in this city can win the same.’’

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The contract between the 496-bed hospital and union does not expire until 2016, according to the union’s statement.

“The staff at Boston Medical Center work tirelessly to give our patients the highest quality care,’’ Kate Walsh, the hospital’s president and CEO, said of the wage increase in a statement. “Taking this step of setting a minimum wage of $15/hour for these workers reflects our recognition of the important role they play in making sure our patients have the best possible experience and our appreciation for all that they do for our patients and their families.’’

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