General Question

MissAnthrope's avatar

Federal minimum wage increases: why do they keep excluding tip-based profession minimum wage?

Asked by MissAnthrope (21406 points ) July 25th, 2009

It kind of burns me up that a good section of the population makes $2.13 an hour, a wage that has not increased a cent since I began waiting tables almost 10 years ago. We are dependent on people to tip us, yet are faced with people who feel it’s not their duty to pay us, that management should. In addition, we are more affected than most by swings in the economy—people still go out to eat, ride in taxis, etc., however, the money they give out as tips definitely goes down as the economy takes downswings.

I don’t understand why we can’t get an increase, as well.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

70 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Would you prefer a fixed wage with no tipping? That is the case in some other countries.

MissAnthrope's avatar

Possibly. What I’d really like is an increase in the tip-based profession wage.

As an aside, having spent enough time in Italy to know what normal life is like, I know that servers here get paid a living wage. I have to say that it must be nice to be so secure in one’s salary, to know your bills will be paid, no matter what. Employees are also under contract, so unless something egregious happens (theft, etc.), you can feel pretty secure in your job. I, on the other hand, can be fired for no reason or explanation, thanks to certain state employment laws.

MrItty's avatar

If the wage increased, management’s cost would increase, which would increase the cost of the menu items, which would make the cost we have to pay to go to dinner increase, which would decrease the number of us who go out to dinner, or at least the frequency with which we do so. We can’t tip you at all if we’re not there to begin with.

MissAnthrope's avatar

I think that’s a cop out, no personal offense meant. It’s ridiculous to me that in this day and age, people are still making about $2/hr. I’m a little surprised that it doesn’t seem to bother anyone else..

It’s one thing when you live in a richer area, but when you live in a place where 10% tips (or less) are the norm, something should be done. I work this job because I’m a student and it offers a flexible schedule. I’ve worked 8 hours and walked out with $30 in tips. Not because I’m a crappy server, mind you, I can easily get a job anywhere. Have worked fine dining and that sort of thing.

MrItty's avatar

It doesn’t bother anyone because we don’t have a caste system in this country. The job you have is the result of choices you’ve made. If you don’t like making $2/hour, stop being a waiter.

MissAnthrope's avatar

I think that answer is also a cop out, which absolves everyone else involved of the responsibility of paying people fairly. So a restaurant takes a bit less profit.. many places, especially chains, can swallow the loss. They take in so much money a day and servers and bartenders are part of what drive the business.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Wow, is it really that little an hour when you’re a waiter? that’s terrible

MrItty's avatar

“absolves everyone else involved of the responsibility of paying people fairly”

I’m sorry, what? Your wage is my responsibility? Like hell it is. Practice some personal responsibility. What you make is YOUR responsibility, not mine. Either become a better waiter so you get a job at a higher-end restaurant, or find a job that pays a non-tippable wage.

MrItty's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir no, that’s not really what they make. They make that plus tips. If they’re such a terrible waiter that the wage + tips don’t equal “normal” minimum wage, the restaurant is responsible for paying the difference.

marinelife's avatar

My feeling is that you can have it one way or the other. If a higher wage scale in put in place, tipping needs to stop.

Personally, I would want the security of fixed wage. It’s why I’ve never wanted to be a commission salesman either.

The reality is that many servers want the untraceability and do not declare their tips for tax purposes.

laureth's avatar

A portion of waitrons’ tickets (10%, from what I hear) are declared as tips to the government, for tax purposes. (That is, the government assumes they made 10% of their tickets in tips, and taxes tham based on this figure.) Yes, it means that sometimes they make more than that and don’t declare it, but it also means that a table that stiffs the waiter or leaves <10% is actually taking money out of that waiter’s pocket.

This is why sometimes those $2/hr paychecks come with no money in them. Waitrons really do survive on their tips.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@MrItty – Well, exactly. YOU don’t want to pay me, and my employer doesn’t want to pay me, and the government doesn’t seem to care. Hence, my original question.

Incidentally, I am qualified (and a desirable hire) for those “high end” places to which you refer. Currently, I am working at such a place, that pays off the health department and quite honestly seems to be skimming tips from the server tip pool. Yes, I’ll be quitting soon because of both of these reasons. But please don’t act like I haven’t worked my way up the server ladder and don’t realize I can be paid better in better establishments.

MissAnthrope's avatar

The traceability is no big deal to me. I’ve had it both ways, where I can claim 10+% of my tips, whereas 100% get declared now. What I’m most concerned about is that the tip-based wage hasn’t gone up a cent over the past decade and I’d really like to know why that is.. it’s nice and all that they’re increasing the federal minimum wage (as I think they definitely should), but I don’t get at all why they consistently exclude people in my wage bracket.

jca's avatar

Many people who are wait staff do so because it is off the books. Therefore they may be undocumented aliens or receiving some government funding and earning money on the side.

If you don’t like the situation as it applies to your job, you have choices, other than complaining, continuing to do the job and doing nothing about it. you can work in another flexible job, such as fast food, or supermarket, Dunkin Donuts, convenience store, or drug store, Walmart, etc. If you really like serving food, you can work at a country club or other catering establishment. They get tips when they do parties, maybe it might be a couple hundred dollars that the staff divides amongst themselves.

If you want to effectuate change on a bigger level, you can call your senator, congressman, whoever, and tell them your feelings. you can organize a grassroots movement of people in your position who would like to lobby the government and tell them your feelings.

last but not least, if enough people feel the way you do and do not take on the profession of waiter, then there would be a shortage of people available to do that job and eating establishments would have to make changes on an individual level. i suspect that the job has got advantages for people willing to work it, and that’s why there’s no shortage. i know that there are people who pay 15–18% and if only 10% is taxed, the wait staff comes out ahead.

MissAnthrope's avatar

What people like MrItty fail to realize is that in depressed areas, tips =/= skill. You can be an amazing server, very personable, and give great service, and still be at the whims of people who shouldn’t be dining out because they haven’t the money to spare to tip (which, excuse me, is a part of the cost of your meal, you’re simply given the freedom to decide how much), or those who really don’t know better. When you’re going to school in a depressed area, as I am, try finding a job that will work around a full-time school schedule. It’s far more important to me that I get my degree than I be a superstar waitress, but even a student has to have money to feed themself.

casheroo's avatar

In our area, it’s $2.83. Still nothing though. I think it should be raised to at least $4.00, because no one tips well, people feel they deserve service and don’t want to pay the people actually providing them service. Everything else in the economy can go up in price, but god forbid you pay the person who is cleaning up your mess or serving you damn food. Really pisses me off.

jca's avatar

alenaD: i understand your point, but what about everything else i said? choices, change?

jca's avatar

not just that i said it, others said it too – i.e. if you don’t like it, don’t do it. any job that anybody has and they don’t like – get another one.

MissAnthrope's avatar

Yes, choice is one thing. But, frankly, what happens when you don’t have a ton of choices? Can’t work in a normal 9–5 job, my classes are mostly during the day. Could work at an even more demoralizing place, but I don’t want to work for Wal-Mart, for example, because I’m ethically opposed to the Evil Empire.

I’m not saying I dislike the discussion that’s arisen here, but it’s not about my choices, I simply would like to know why the tip-based professions continually get ignored when it comes to federal minimum wage increases.

kevbo's avatar

It varies by state (and municipality I imagine). Some states are much better than others. You might consider moving.

http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/state/tipped.htm

MissAnthrope's avatar

Not a possibility, though I’ve looked into it because I’m itching to move. Anywhere else puts me 1½–3 years behind, due to curriculum differences. The easiest and fastest way to my degree (and to no longer waiting tables) is to finish at the school I started.

DrBill's avatar

When I was waiting tables, I made more (tips included) than the assistant manager. Wait-people make their worth to their customer.

I realize first hand how hard the job is, so I tip about 20% with a $5 minimum.

MrItty's avatar

“I simply would like to know why the tip-based professions continually get ignored when it comes to federal minimum wage increases.”

They’re not. Stop perpetuating this myth that if no one tips you, you will only receive $2/hour. That’s not true, and you know it’s not true. If your tips don’t raise your wage from $2/hour up to the standard minimum wage, your employer is responsible for paying you the difference. When the standard minimum wage goes up, your “I made no tips” wage goes up too.

MrItty's avatar

“What people like MrItty fail to realize is that in depressed areas, tips =/= skill.”

Please don’t tell me what I realize. My sister, a college student, has been a waitress at Applebees for the last 4 years. When she’s ‘home’ for the summers and winter breaks, she makes ridiculously more money on tips than she does when she waitresses at the Applebees near her school. Same waitress, same restaurant chain, completely different tips. It’s still her choice to continue to work there while at school, rather than rearrange her schedule and/or get a different job while there. And she knows it.

And please get off your high horse by playing the “I’m special because I’m in college” card. Everyone in college is in 100% the same situation as you are. Class schedules preventing you from having the job you want. Deal with it. No one’s saying it’s easy. We’re saying it’s possible, and you have options beyond whining that the federal government isn’t doing enough for you.

Facade's avatar

I don’t think it would break the banks of whoever is paying them to pay waiters maybe $5/hr. $2/hr is ridiculous.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty I don’t know much about this topic but I just can’t help that you have some sort of bitter vendetta

girlofscience's avatar

I’m sorry I don’t have an answer for you, but since you have worked for tips for 10 years, I am very curious about this. What do people tip? What percentage of people tip 20%+, and so on? And in what kind of restaurant do you work?

I always tip at least 20%, unless the service is awful, in which case I tip 15%. I think that tipping any less as atrocious and offensive to people in your line of work. What percentage of people do not follow these rules?

casheroo's avatar

Wait, you’ve been serving for 10 years? May I ask….why?? You know how it is in the service industry, most people don’t set goals to continue to be just a server. Maybe you’re working your way up the ladder, which is fine since some restaurants pay managers quite well, but if you’ve been just a server for 10 years…you obviously know how it is to be one. I have met career servers before, and I’ve honestly never understood it. Yes, there can be some great nights, but usually people serve while in school or to make extra money..it’s not a career.
My husband has been trying desperately to get out of the service industry, but he knows it’s easy and quick money (if you serve, not when he cooks) Either way, his goal is to be completely out of restaurants once I’m done school, so he can go back to school. So, I guess I’m just curious why you still serve tables. Are you in school as well?

Zendo's avatar

TIP simply means “To Insure Promptness.” It is not mandatory, and certainly not when the server doesn’t deserve one.

The restaurant owners are cowards and cheapskates to assume the diner will “tip” the wait staff enough to make it worth their while to come to work every day.

The waitstaff is/are cowards for not forming a union and forcing management to pay a higher salary regardless of server’s “tips.”

jca's avatar

i agree with casheroo. as i said before, there are choices. you gave some reasoning why you don’t want to work at walmart, ok, but there are more options available to you than that. catering establishments are one, as i mentioned in one of my previous answers. you keep working at the same place, complaining about why the feds don’t up the minimum for tipped employees. you don’t like it, do something about it, including changing jobs. as mritty said, you’re like every other college student with a school schedule to work around, or vice versa. i did it, and i didn’t like the jobs i had for various reasons, but it’s not forever. i don’t understand why you are doing it for ten years if it’s something you’re doing to get through school. were you in school for ten years? that’s not unheard of either, just asking (coming from someone who was on the “five year plan” herself). just trying to figure out why the talk but no action to change what you feel is wrong.

jca's avatar

to answer the other question someone asked ‘what do other people tip?’ i tip 15–20%

MrItty's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir I have no vendetta. I am, however, bitter towards people who whine and complain that other people (customers, government, whatever) aren’t doing enough for them rather than accepting personal responsibility for their own lives and their own choices.

When they then follow it up by giving misleading if not downright false statements, well, the bitterness increases.

dynamicduo's avatar

I am so sad this is true for you guys in the States. Here in Canada people in the food industry are paid the same minimum wage elsewhere, unless they serve alcohol in which case their minimum wage is $1.25 lower per hour. I agree that a tip should not be mandatory and I appreciate not having the burden and guilt of paying the staff’s salary involved in the decision whether to tip or not. Despite this, many people regularly tip 10–20% for food and 20% for alcoholic drinks.

The fact that you don’t even get an increase is really sucky. In my investigation I found that minimum wage is going up next year here in Ontario and yes alcoholic servers get a slightly smaller increase, but it’s still an increase. The fact that you are expected to live of a bit more than $2 an hour (plus an unknown and varying amount of tips) is in my opinion shameful.

jca's avatar

did Mritty not make it clear that if they get less than the minimum wage amount from the total of their wage plus their tips, then the employer has to make up the difference?

casheroo's avatar

@jca Wait, who said that? I’ve worked in many restaurants, even corporate chains..I was never compensated if I made well below minimum wage. If you had a slow night, you were screwed.

Zendo's avatar

@jca Nobody is making up the difference.

jca's avatar

casheroo did not say that. Mritty said that in his ”@” to Simone deBeuvoir. way up at the top…..

DrBill's avatar

A restaurant here tried paying $8/hr and everyone turn in their tips. The staff voted to go back to their lower wage so they could keep the tips.

A “good” waitperson can make a lot more than the flat rate workers.

jca's avatar

i am still stuck on complaining about doing a job you’ve been doing for ten years to get through school. either the job is not really that bad or if it’s so awful, use it as an incentive to finish school quickly.

(again, as i said before, consider working in a catering establishment, where you get the wage and maybe some tips from the party host). options, options, options.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I used to work at crApplebees. They paid 2/h and it sucks. Hard. Especially in a town where you are either waiting on cheap people or rich stuck up highschool kids who dont tip. You know how much it sucks to work an 8 hour day and go home with 13 dollars?

While waiting wasnt a hard job, the money just wasnt there, so i left it. It really sucks because i know you can make really good money if your in the right location, but if not, your pretty much fucked. On top of that, its hard to justify all the bullshit work they make you do around the restaurant when you know theyre only paying you 2 dollars an hour, but not even that since your checks are usually voided out at the end of the week.

I dont even think that waiter pay rate has to be equal to minimum wage, but 2 dollars an hour? Give me a fucking break. At least 5–6.50.

@jca yea, i tried that once. Ya know what the response was “well there was plenty of other nights were you averaged over minimum wage, so too bad.”

MissAnthrope's avatar

I live in WV. I’ve been in and out of school (my life story is long and probably unnecessary here) since I was 18, mainly because it was a long time before I even knew what I wanted to do. I tried many other types of jobs until I found waiting tables, I happen to be very good at it, find the flexible schedule appealing, etc. Now, living and working in WV is way different than living in, say, California, or even Minnesota (I know, I’ve done both). I made loads of money in MN but had to move due to shitty circumstances out of my control and ended up in WV.

I decided that the best way out of waiting tables was to get my degree. I’ve been working on that for some time now (minus 2½ years while I moved to emotionally support a girlfriend in a relationship that went down the drain), but I’m still not done. So, waiting tables is really my best option, in terms of skill, temperament, flexibility of schedule. As you said yourself, MrItty, tips vary considerably depending on which area you work. I am fine dining qualified, but good luck finding fine dining establishments where I live. I worked at one and had to quit because the owner was a tyrant who screamed swear words at me at the top of his lungs, and I simply won’t take that type of abuse. It’s unprofessional.

Where I work now, I thought was upscale and very much like the last place I worked, which was a country club in VA, where I made very good money. In fact, made $7/hr plus tips. This current place has turned out to be a joke, is disgusting in terms of hygiene (if I went into detail, you all would be seriously appalled), and they skim tips from the server pool (try working your ass off for 14 hours straight on a holiday and making $79 at the end of it).

Not a whole lot of options. I worked at Olive Garden for a while, but in a college town, they will only hire people who can work 2 day shifts during the work week, which I am usually unable to do because of my f-ing school and their dumb scheduling. It’s similar in other places in town. Other restaurants will flat-out refuse to hire students, despite the fact that it’s illegal.

My question was not AT ALL “woe is me, let’s hash out how much I hate my job” type of thing, it was seriously about wanting to know WHY the tip-based profession wage has not risen in the 10 years I’ve waited tables.

MrItty's avatar

@casheroo and @Zendo if either (A) you don’t know the laws pertaining to your jobs or (B) you do know the laws, but your bosses don’t follow them, and you do nothing to make it an issue, that’s your problem and your responsibility.

The law is VERY clear on the matter. If the tippable employee does not make up to minimum wage via tips, the employer must compensate up to minimum wage.

http://www.toolkit.com/small_business_guide/sbg.aspx?nid=P05_4045
http://www.dol.gov/esa/minwage/q-a.htm
among hundreds of others.

MissAnthrope's avatar

They are supposed to make up the difference, but they don’t always do it. Agreed that the employee can make a fuss or leave, but doesn’t erase the fact that employees do get screwed.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty
yeah somehow I have trouble seeing how a person that brings this up to their employer will not quickly be let go of for, oh you know, ‘burning toast’

MrItty's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Yes, and? The job is already screwing you out of your rightful wages. Why would you want to continue to work there?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty because not everyone has job mobility

MrItty's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir It doesn’t require “mobility” to go from one waitstaff job to another. Restaurants exist everywhere, in plentiful numbers.

MissAnthrope's avatar

MrItty, have you ever had a job as a server?

MrItty's avatar

Do you count McDonalds? No, neither do I.

Do you want me to have sympathy for the poor waiters and waitresses who have no choice but to be waiters and waitresses? Not gonna happen. They have the same choices and opportunities as everyone else in the country. If waitstaff was the only job available to everyone, everyone in the world would be waitstaff.

Personal choices MATTER. I despise the people who think that what they did last year, 5 years ago, 10 years ago, shouldn’t have any impact. That it’s in the past so it shouldn’t be of consequence. Bull. What choices you make define who your are and who you will be at every point forward from that choice.

MrItty's avatar

@AlenaD in your specific case, look at the choices you’ve made that you’ve revealed in just this thread:
* You went to school in a low-income area, and got a job as waitstaff in that low-income area
* You “took 2.5 years off” for a girlfriend
* You refuse to work for Wal*Mart on ethical grounds.

All of those contributed to where and what you are today. At any point along the way, did you somehow not know what the life of a waitstaffer was? Were you unaware of the wages and the job quality? Of course not. You make informed decisions in your life, and you live with the consequences of those decisions.

MacBean's avatar

@MrItty—I’m very happy for you, that you have complete and utter control over every aspect of your life, and never have to endure unpleasant circumstances. It must be nice to be perfect, and able to pass judgment on those who aren’t so fortunate.

chelseababyy's avatar

@MrItty Let me just say something here. I currently work as a takeaway server, not even a waitress at Outback Steakhouse. Do you think I want to work there? Not in the slightest. But unfortunately for me, it’s the ONLY job that I applied for (and believe me, I applied for many and did many interviews) that I actually got a position for. I applied for office jobs, sales jobs, retail jobs, etc. Probably anywhere from 20–25 positions. I called them back, did follow ups. But the only thing that I got, was a server job at Outback. Mind you, we’re the busiest Outback in Colorado, and lately on a good night, I make 30 bucks.

Apparently I do not have the same opportunities and choices as everyone else. Because of my age, because I’m not done with school yet. Is that my fault? Nope, not at all, I can’t help how old I am, and it’s not like I can rush school. So how is it that I have the same opportunities? Please enlighten me.

MrItty's avatar

@MacBean and you know anything about the choices that I made, or the situations I was in, how, exactly?

@chelseababyy and you honeslty think that the other 29 jobs didn’t hire you just because of random chance? Or that there was a conspiracy to keep you away from a better job? Who you are, the choices you make, how you present yourself, what you chose to do before, ALL of those factor in to what jobs you get. It is not simply how many applications you put out. It’s the quality of applicant you are.

Oh and “because of my age, because I’m not done with school yet”? Seriously do you read what you write? Are you the ONLY person your age? Are you the ONLY student? Of course not. Did/Do other people in the same situation make other choices that enabled them to do better? Absolutely.

Facade's avatar

I really can’t believe what I’m reading…

chelseababyy's avatar

@MrItty Nope. It’s all about qualifications that I have no choice about. Is it my fault I’m not done with school? Or because of my lack of experience? Nope. Yes I read what I said. I never said I was the only person going through it or the only person my age. And what choices do you think other people made to enable them to do better? I would so love to know.

I worked my ass off and was nothing less than professional working with these people. Outback is holding off on making me a server because my lack of experience, while they hired 2 new servers. One of which was a transfer, and the other was someone much older than me who has been serving all her life. Do I work to my full potential at work everyday to show them I deserve to get moved up? Absolutely.

MrItty's avatar

@chelseababyy I am amazed at the number of people who don’t grasp that ALL your choices matter, not just the ones you made 5 minutes ago.

How well did you do in high school? Including academics and extracurriculars?
Where did you apply to go to college? Where were you accepted as a result?
What major did you decide upon when entering college? What job opportunities does that major lend itself to – not just in four years, but right now, before you graduate?
What courses did you take? How did you do in them? What did you learn?

Why is “waitstaff” the only position available to you? After a year of college, many majors (including mine) lend themselves to at least get a summer internship working in your career field. Hell, one semester in to college I was at least qualified to apply to and work for the tutoring center, tutoring other students in the courses I’d just completed.

I worked at McDonalds for three friggin years, starting in High School, and continuing through the first year of college, when I had obtained enough knowledge about my career field to get a semi-decent summer job in computer programming. It started off paying me $7/hour (yes, that was above minimum wage back then) until I was able to solve the task at hand, when it was retroactively raised to $10/hour. I supported myself in college via tutoring and teaching assisting, and oh yes, through MASSIVE loans from the government and other entitties. Loans that I haven’t even finished paying back yet, 8 years after I graduated.

Could I have chosen something else? Chosen not to get the loans, and to only pay for what I could getting tips at the local Friendly’s? Of course I could. But that’s not the choice I made. Your CHOICE is everything. EVERYONE is in the same situation. It has nothing to do with being more or less “fortunate” than others. That is such a phenomenal cop-out that it’s revolting to read. People who are successful are not lucky. People who are struggling are not unlucky. They make the right or wrong choices, and they succeed for fail at what they do. To suggest anything else is to try to absolve yourself of responsibility for your own actions and inactions.

chelseababyy's avatar

@MrItty I was in and out of high school due to abuse. I was in school, then wasn’t able to fully be there because I was taken out of custody of my Mom and lived an hour away, then I went back to live with her. She put me in an outpatient program in a mental hospital because she said I was too much to handle, when in fact the therapists said there was nothing wrong with me, and there was something wrong with her. When I was in school, I got good grades, when I wasn’t in school, I didn’t do great at all. Was a member of Select Choir, Drama Club, and did stats for Track (I received a Varsity Letter for Management). While I didn’t graduate in June of 07, when everyone else in my class did. I worked on it and ended up getting my Diploma that winter (via Penn Foster).

I was sheltered until a month or so before I turned 18. Then I moved out. Could I have turned out a lot worse because of the horrible things I went through? Absolutely. Have I had help from my family along the way? Probably ONCE. Have I done everything I could to provide for myself? Most definitely. Am I working as hard as possible to get my degree, keep a roof over mine and my boyfriends head? You better believe it. Do I have enough money to do anything else, other than pay bills and buy food? Nope. And I’m lucky enough to even to that.

I applied at many colleges, and got in to some, because of the fluctuation of my grades.. Being in and out of school so much.

I am currently enrolled at ACC in Denver, doing a 60+60 program to get my Bachelors in Communications/Business. I will do two years here, then two in a bigger school. From that I can do Public Relations, mostly anything in the media field, journalism, start my own business, etc. I can get internships with many businesses if I so wish because of my field and my proximity to downtown Denver.

I haven’t taken any courses yet, this is my first semester. Right out of high school I moved around a lot, trying to clear my head and bounce back from all that had happened during the years. But this semester I’m talking Interpersonal Communications, Spanish, English Comp and Psych.

I currently check job sites, as well as craigslist jobs daily, and apply, follow up, etc. Mostly every place I have tried has said they chose someone else because of experience. While I don’t have much, I have worked in retail, in a law firm, and another restaurant. All cut short (except the law firm) thanks to my mother refusing to take me to work, or even let me go to work for that matter.

Luckily for me, I don’t need loans, I have enough grants to cover my tuition.

MrItty's avatar

@chelseababyy 1) Please tell me you at least agree that your situation is not “normal”. There are exceptions to every rule. Some people, life truly does shit upon. If what you say is true, you are squarely in that category, and you are not the kind of person I’m ranting about.

2) Give yourself more credit. Getting enough grants to cover your tuition is not “lucky” for you. Grants are something you have to apply for and achieve, not something you find on the side of the road.

chelseababyy's avatar

@MrItty Normal? Not in the slightest. But I try to be as much as possible. I’m working harder than ever to get my life back on track. To actually lead a semi-normal life. I don’t like being an exception to the rule, and I’m doing what I can to get as far away as possible from the way things used to be. I do believe I work hard, if not a bit harder than a lot of people. It’s hard having to explain to financial aid why I need a dependency override for my FAFSA, and then having to get all the court documents, etc, for them to see that it really is what I need. Opening up that can of worms is never fun.

Thanks. For the past month and a half I have been in and out of the college trying to get it all straightened out.

MissAnthrope's avatar

There is no such thing as “normal”. Talk to people and you’ll find all sorts of extenuating circumstances. If you happen to live some cookie cutter life, then count yourself “lucky”. That’s provided you find it lucky to live some cookie cutter life. Most people I know don’t, though.. either live the life or find it lucky.

I don’t really get what the chip on your shoulder is, MrItty, but frankly, I’m kind of over trying to have a rational discussion with you. It seems to be fairly impossible.

Allie's avatar

@AlenaD Have you ever considered a job at your school (if there is one)?
I was in the same position a little while ago. I needed a job and the only places I could get one were at retail places or restaurants. My mom suggested that I check on-campus jobs, so I did. There were no positions available in my major department (which obviously would have been my first choice), but I got a job as a student assistant in the ECE department. My first day on the job one of my bosses called me in her office and told me that they understand 100% that school comes first and they come second. I have a set schedule which changes each quarter as I take new classes, but they do an exceptional job of working with me and around my changing availability. If there are jobs available on your campus, I highly recommend checking there.

On to the actual question…
I don’t have an answer and I can only speculate as to why the minimum wage for a job with tips doesn’t increase like a regular minimum wage job. My guess is that maybe they think increasing minimum wage will put extra spending money in people’s pockets and they’ll go out more – eat at more restaurants. Again, this is purely a guess. Probably a poor guess at that.

MrItty's avatar

@AlenaD there might not be ‘normal’, but there is most definitely ‘average’. @chelseababyy‘s experiences are not average. Most people’s, by definition, are.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty I don’t think any of us are saying that personal choices don’t matter…I’m just saying that personal choices aren’t the only thing that matter and we don’t live in a vacuum. I bet you you’re one of those people that things fat people and all their problems are their fault without considering targeting of fast food restaurants, for example, of certain neighborhoods and races and income brackets…yeah, you’re right, it’s ALL about free will…as if

MrItty's avatar

“targeting of fast food restaurants” is BS. Unless it’s the ONLY option for sustenance in a certain person’s neighboorhood and budget, yes, going there consistently and getting fat because of it is 100% their fault.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty oh no yeah you’re right
all the data in the public health world is BS
it’s a conspiracy
we WANT more healthcare costs associated with obesity
and so when we study why people do what they do and what kind of access to healthy foods they have it’s just for fun…we don’t really think it matters…
When I used to provide trainings to low-income neighborhood teachers to bring more physical activity into their pre-schools (since oh you know they couldn’t afford a playground on site or pay for gym teachers or even be able to provide that for their kids), it was all about BS….yeah when we did research with thousands of Bodegas across specific neighborhoods in NYC where they can’t afford to stock fruits and vegetables like say Whole Foods in the city or anywhere rich people live really, that was all BS…when Shape Up New York was started so people can buddy up for exersize because it is UNSAFE in specific neighborhoods to bike or walk or do exersizing alone, that was BS…when we worked with elementary and middle schools to start wellness councils to fight specific policy decisions that their schools made because companies that bring soft drinks and snacks to schools also provide funding for these poor schools, that was BS…oh no you’re right…when poor people have to work more than 2 jobs to provide for their kids and the only cost-savvy and time-savvy option is the unhealthy family dinner at KFC , that’s what they’ll do instead of trying to locate spinach…yeah, don’t get me started…so much BS, I’m tired of writing it

MrItty's avatar

Why are you acting as though you’re saying something I’m not?

Me: “Unless it’s the ONLY option for sustenance in a certain person’s neighboorhood and budget”

You: “when poor people have to work more than 2 jobs to provide for their kids and the only cost-savvy and time-savvy option is the unhealthy family dinner at KFC”

How is that different?

Allie's avatar

[mod says:] Stay on topic. The original question is about minimum wage.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MrItty that was not the statement i was referring to
I was talking about the ‘targeting neighborhoods is BS’ statement and
never mind, clearly this isn’t the place to discuss this, we’ll talk later

MrItty's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir yes, if you ignore half of one’s statement, you can generally take the other half to mean anything you want.

Sorry, mods.

jca's avatar

this question should be asked of your congressman or senator. someone who could effectuate some change.

in the meantime, all jobs have positives and negatives. everyone decides whether the disadvantages of their current situation are something that is tolerable, weighing their options. if you think it’s intolerable, it’s time for a job hunt. if it’s tolerable because the job has other nice qualities, then deal with it.

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
or
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther