Seattle’s Tipped Employees Are Not Low-Wage Workers

10003892_737142256316171_117522615_nLast week we presented a counter proposal to $15Now or the newer $15-in-three-years.

This week we start a series of reports that make our case along with supporting testimonials from employees and the public at large on this site. For now, we’re presenting data in support of how Washington already offers its workers the highest effective minimum wage in the nation.

Effective Minimum Wage (EMW) = Minimum Wage Adjusted for the Cost of Living

Maintaining the current state minimum wage of $9.32 for tipped employees will allow independent business owners the opportunity to absorb wage increases for their non-tipped workers, maintain existing staff levels and in some cases, continue operations.

– Tipped workers have more purchasing power in Seattle: Seattle provides the highest effective minimum wage for tipped and non-tipped workers of any major metropolitan area in the US.

– Businesses pay more to operate in Seattle than anywhere else: Bars and restaurants in Seattle carry the highest effective labor costs of any major city in the nation.

– Washington’s minimum wage is mandated to adjust annually already: Increases are based on the Consumer Price Index, keeping the minimum wage and purchasing power in check.

The proposed increase in Seattle’s minimum wage is unique. We have set the bar for the minimum wage for metropolitan areas in the US for 20 years and continue to have the highest effective minimum wage.

Making such a radical increase would be the first time that a city with the leading effective minimum wage has chosen to take such drastic action. Tips MUST be considered income in the minimum wage debate.

Click here to view the full PDF: 2014_04_09 – Data Analysis in Support of Seattle’s Tipped Employees are NOT Low-Wage Workers – Forward Seattle