Business

Los Angeles follows Seattle in $15 hourly minimum wage

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Los Angeles has become the largest city in the US to agree a $15 (£9.67) minimum wage.

The City Council voted 14-1 to pass the law in a victory for the national campaign to raise wages for low-paid workers.

Seattle and San Francisco have already agreed to increase the minimum wage to $15 by 2017 and 2018 respectively.

That compares with a $7.25 federal minimum wage which individual states can opt to beat or reduce.

"Today, Los Angeles becomes the latest and largest city to throw its support behind the legions of workers who ask for nothing less than to be paid a fair and decent wage," said Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, a lobby group for worker rights.

The $15 minimum will be in place by July 2020, according to the proposed legislation.

To get there, from July 2016, the wage will increase annually starting at $10.50. Non-profit organisations with 25 workers or fewer will have longer to raise wages.

"There's still work to be done, but you will not see this council shy away from its responsibility," Council President Herb Wesson said on his Twitter account.

US retail giant Walmart - the nation's largest private employer - announced in February it plans to raise wages for employees at its US stores.

By 1 February 2016, all current workers will earn at least $10 per hour, it said.

Image caption A look at minimum wages across the US from 2014

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