Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Kill the Minimum Wage Tip Credit

Now, those of us who live in WA state are blessed in this way.  We don't have a minimum wage tip credit for tipped employees.  I feel for all my fellow Americans who live in states that allow such a terrible system of wages.

Tip Credit:  A federal Government rule which permits establishments which allow employees to be tipped to claim a credit against their minimum wage obligation.  They still must pay a cash wage of 2.13 / hr to cover payroll taxes, but that is it.  The states can individually decide whether to increase or do away with the tip credit through their own regulations. 

The tip credit is immoral.  Plain and simple.  Many people feel that hard work yields good wages.  And while this is true in one context, this is NOT true in another.  The tip credit is a cop out.  A way for businesses to cheat their employees out of their portion of the profits.  Employers engage their employees in competition with each other to shroud the fact that they're not getting their part of the profits they help create.  Its a cheat, a sham, and it needs to go away. 

I've worked as a tipped employee.  And while I'm not easy on the eyes to most traditional folks, I made crappy tips when I worked as a waiter under a tip credit system.  I was barely breaking 6.00/hr at the time.  But basically, I'm not thin, I'm not attractive in the normal sense of the word, and so, my tips sucked.  Tips are not reliable income by any sense of the word, and often employers take advantage of the tip credit by using "average sales" vs. actual tips.  then the burden of proof is on the employee to PROVE they didn't make the minimum wage amount through record keeping. 

Call Congress and ask them to do away with this painfully terrible system of cheating.  The Minimum Wage tip credit is criminal, unethical, and immoral.  No one in the greatest nation on God's green earth deserves to make 2.13 an hour in this day and age. 

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