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Chicago’s Radical Solution For Broken Tipping Culture

What if corporations just... paid their workers more?

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We dug into how American tipping culture got so broken, and the fight to fix it.

It turns out that your tips are subsidizing the payrolls of multi-billion dollar chains, while they pay their workers under minimum wage.

It’s a system rooted in slavery, and pushed by a wealthy restaurant owners onto the rest of us.

But there’s a growing movement to change it.

Take Chicago, for example. The city just voted to eliminate the subminimum wage for restaurant workers.

Currently, tipped workers like servers are paid $9.48 an hour plus tips. The new law will raise that to the full minimum wage of $15.80.

The compromise approved by the Committee on Workforce Development calls for tipped workers — now paid $9.48 an hour — to receive 8% annual increases beginning July 1, until reaching 100% parity with the regular hourly minimum wage on July 1, 2028.

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