New wages go into effect when the Walters reopens, projected for February 3, 2021
Baltimore, MD—January 5, 2021—The Walters Art Museum today announced that it is raising its minimum wage for all full-time hourly positions to $15 per hour, and bringing part-time hourly positions to a $13 per hour minimum. These new pay rates will be effective with the first day of the museum’s public reopening, currently scheduled for February 3, 2021.
While the museum originally expected to reopen in mid-January 2021, the Walters also announced today that by delaying its reopening until February, it can take advantage of an offer from Vicinity Energy to convert one of the museum’s boilers to a steam system. This is a meaningful shift towards cleaner and more reliable energy—and provides long-term financial benefits.
“An important element of our discussions on diversity, equity, inclusion, and access has been about pay equity, so I am happy that we are able to move forward with raising the floor for hourly employees to $15 per hour,” said Julia Marciari-Alexander, Andrea B. and John H. Laporte Director. “Raising the museum’s minimum wage is both a civic initiative within Baltimore and a nation-wide conversation grounded in the need to provide a real living wage. We are grateful to our donors, whose financial support has enabled us to make this investment in our employees and our community.”
This wage adjustment is the culmination of the museum’s longstanding commitment to reaching a $15/hour floor for all full-time positions. The Walters originally made this commitment when the Baltimore City Council passed a bill in 2017 to increase the City’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2022. Even as both the City and State moved their target date to 2025, the museum conducted the financial modeling and fundraising necessary to plan to reach this goal sooner.
Separately, the opportunity to switch one of the Walters’ boilers to a steam system, with funding from Vicinity Energy, is an important one for a museum operating in a collection of historic buildings. While the museum has made many investments in its facilities in recent years, infrastructure changes such as this one are costly. The switch to a new system provides a more reliable source of energy, which in turn reduces the museum’s costs over the long-term.
About The Walters Art Museum
The Walters Art Museum is a cultural hub in the heart of Baltimore, located in the city’s Mount Vernon neighborhood. The museum’s collection spans more than seven millennia, from 5000 BCE to the 21st century, and encompasses 36,000 objects from around the world. Walking through the museum’s historic buildings, visitors encounter a stunning panorama of thousands of years of art, from romantic 19th-century images of French gardens to mesmerizing Ethiopian icons, richly illuminated Qur’ans and Gospel books, ancient Roman sarcophagi, and serene images of the Buddha. Since its founding, the Walters’ mission has been to bring art and people together to create a place where people of every background can be touched by art. As part of this commitment, admission to the museum and special exhibitions is always free.