Nonprofits balking at $12 minimum wage for Philly contractors


Starting this year, contractors paid with Philadelphia government dollars must pay their employees at least $12 an hour.

But some nonprofits, saying they can’t afford it, are asking for an exemption.


Mike Walsh of Adelphoi, a nonprofit that helps about 2,500 at-risk youth in Pennsylvania, only has a few dozen kids from Philadelphia. He says mandating a $12 minimum wage for all 310 of his employees would cost too much … especially after having to raise pay last summer.

“Adelphoi did spend in excess of $300,000 to get to the $10.10 an hour,” Walsh said. “It would present an economic hardship, about another $400,000, to get to 12.”

Jim Amato of Catholic Social Services says the increase would cost his group $82,000 more to provide after-school services.

“My only recourse would be to go to Catholic Charities to raise those $82,000, and that money is not there,” Amato said.

Most of the contractors requesting waivers perform work for the Department of Human Services.

The city has been asked to supply additional funding so providers can afford the raises.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal