Protect Tips and Protect Workers

BaristaCountingTipsLate last year, the Department of Labor announced a proposed rule change that would allow employers in tipped industries (primarily employers in the restaurant and food service industry) to collect and keep all tips earned by employees above the minimum wage. If employers chose to keep these tips, they could do so without notifying restaurant patrons.

Including tips, waiters and bartenders only earn about $10.11 per hour, with Black workers earning $9.62/hour and Latino workers earning $9.93. According to a report from ROC and NELP, workers in the industry have median earnings between $19,900 and $20,800 per year - yet this rule could transfer $5.8 billion from workers to employers.

Action Step
  • Write a public comment before February 5 to share your thoughts on this proposal.
    • EPI and a number of participating organizations put together an easy form to send comments. You can use their language or customize your own. 
    • You can also submit comments directly in electronic format or hard copy to Melissa Smith; Director of the Division of Regulations, Legislation, and Interpretation; Wage and Hour Division; U.S. Department of Labor; 200 Constitution Avenue N.W., Room S-3502; Washington, DC 20210. Please reference Re: RIN 1235-AA21, Comments in Response to Proposed Rulemaking: Tip Regulations Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). 
    • All comments must be submitted by 11:59 PM on Monday, February 5, 2018. 

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