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In Washington state, paid sick leave, minimum wage increase coming Jan. 1

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TUMWATER, Wash.  — More workers in Washington will have paid sick leave and the state's minimum wage will increase to $11.50 an hour in the new year.

The increase is part of 2016's Initiative 1433, and will ultimately raise the state's rate to $13.50 an hour by 2020. The law also requires employers to provide paid sick leave starting Jan. 1, when the latest minimum wage rate takes effect.

Employees will earn at least one hour of paid sick leave for every 40 hours worked, according a press release issued Wednesday by the state Department of Labor and Industries.

For employers in cities that already have higher minimum wages, including Seattle, the local minimum wage rate will apply as long as it is higher than the state minimum. The statewide minimum wage will increase to $12 in 2019 and will hit $13.50 the following year.

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