One Fair Wage Hearing – Hospitality Industries Only
There are two tiers of workers in New York: those who are guaranteed regular minimum wage and a reliable paycheck, and those who are paid a subminimum wage, plus-customer given tips, and thus don’t know how much they will earn each week.
Workers, specifically women, in the hospitality industry are especially affected by subminimum wage as they are forced to tolerate inappropriate customer behavior to collect enough tips to support themselves and their families. Restaurant servers, 61% of whom are female, experience the worst rates of sexual harassment, perpetrated by both their customers and managers who take advantage of the servers’ vulnerability and necessary reliance on goodwill.
The Commissioner of Labor is holding public hearings to examine industries and evaluate the possibility of ending minimum wage tip credits in New York State. New York’s poorest and lowest-paid workers need One Fair Wage plus tips to make ends meet and support their families.
The hearing on June 27th will be strictly focussed on hospitality industries only; however on June 19th, the hearing focussed on non-hospitality industries takes place.
We ask you to stand with the hard-working men and women of New York who deserve reliable and fair pay. You can simply attend a hearing or deliver a three minute testimonial. Note that testimony may not be read on behalf of another individual and testifiers should bring at least 5 copies of their testimony to submit to the panel.
Priority in seating and speaking will be given to those who preregistered. Preregistration will close 48 hours before the hearing date. Seating and speaking order for those who do not preregister will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis as determined by event staff.
If you would like to submit a written testimony, email it to firstname.lastname@example.org before July 1st, 2018.
But first, learn more about why tipped workers need One Fair Wage.
- Tipped Workers are among the poorest workers in New York and many are forced to rely on food stamps, housing support, and Medicaid just to make ends meet.
- Restaurant servers, 61% of whom are women, experience poverty at more than double the statewide rate.
- Car wash workers in New York report taking home as little as $125 a week with short or nonexistent breaks and are frequently sent home without pay depending on the weather.
- A sub-minimum wage increases gender pay inequity by forcing tipped workers to rely on customers’ goodwill to survive, which exposes countless women to sexual harassment.
- Restaurant servers, 61% female, experience the worst rates of sexual harassment of any industry because they must tolerate inappropriate customer behavior to get enough in tips to feed their families.
- The US Department of Labor reported that 83.8% of restaurants had some type of wage and hour violation, including 1,170 tip credit violations, which resulted in nearly $5.5 million in back wages, due to complicated tip credit and wage rules.
- The NYS Department of Labor found that in New York City alone, 4 out of 5 car washes were stealing their workers’ wages.
- Car wash workers are exposed to offensive cleaning and degreasing substances, and they work around high-pressure hoses, unguarded machinery, and poorly protected electrical sources that are close to wet surfaces.
- Seven states – California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Nevada, Montana, and Minnesota – do not have a two-tier wage system and pay all workers the same minimum wage. Poverty rates and sexual harassment claims are lower than the rest of the country, tipping rates in the restaurant industry are the same or better, and the restaurant industry is thriving in those states.
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