I am unsure where the actual story is here.
This only refers to non-tipped employees such as cleaners, office staff, etc. What is the legal minimum wage for these staff in New Jersey? Is he increasing or decreasing the hourly rate he pays these employees - the article doesnt make that clear (although I assume from the tone of the owners quotes he is increasing the rate).
The article is actually inaccurate in its broad brush reference to how serving staff “overseas” are treated with regard to tipping. Different countries have different attitudes, arrangements and cultures - you’ll find a fair range of practice just in Europe.
Current non-tip employee minimum wage in NJ is $ 11. per hour. For tipped employees (It’s been a few years since I’ve been involved in restaurant payroll so excuse me if I’m off a bit) was $2.63 per hour. There has been a gradual step up of the tipped minimum wage, currently it’s around $3.50 and in a few years will be approximately $5.00 per hour.
To my personal understanding Mc Cloone’s was paying $ 13. per hour to non-tipped kitchen staff like dishwashers etc. The recent increase is most likely to try and secure his employees to their positions as more restrictions are lifted there is about to be an employment boom in the restaurant industry, making for some competition for good employees.
Just this morning NPR had a story about how difficult it is for US restaurants to staff up again. Many workers apparently had to find other employment during the pandemic and don’t plan to return to the industry. Others aren’t rushing back.
Restaurants that depend on seasonal workers are especially hard-hit, according to the report. They can’t bring in temporary staff members from other countries as they have in the past.
Staffing up is about to become a problem in the UK. In England, restaurants will open for indoor service from 17/5 (can’t recall dates for the other three nations) but already the industry is talking problems. In major cities, many places have been dependent on immigrant labour - often from Eastern Europe. They are finding that many have returned home - due to Brexit and Covid - and are unlikely to return.
Here’s another article on this topic from Eater. Very interesting to see where this will lead or if anything will change in the restaurant industry…
One of my nephews was working as a chef prior to the pandemic. He was first furloughed and then lost his job permanently. He’s now working in an office job and is not intending to return to the kitchen. His view is that the new job means he works shorter hours, he has his evenings to himself and he’s not on his feet all his shift (so is not as tired).
Well, we support the $15 minimum wage so we’ve been paying it to all of our employees.