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NYC Tipped Restaurant Workers Call for Increased Sub-Minimum Wage

by Kelsey Schappell
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Kelsey Schappell, WFUV

Some New York restaurant workers who receive tips want Governor Cuomo to raise their minimum wage from $5 an hour to the full $9 non-tipped employees receive.

Jose Sanchez works as a delivery man at a Domino's in Upper Manhattan. Today, he was one of about 50 restaurant workers protesting outside of the pizza chain. 

He said he can't survive on tips alone. 

"Many of us have to work two to three jobs just to get by, sacrificing everything, including time with our family,” Sanchez said through a translator.

The Cuomo administration is getting ready to appoint a board to look into a potential increase in the sub-minimum wage for tipped workers. Paul Sonn, with the National Employment Law Project, said New York should follow the examples of other states.

"States like California, Oregon, and Washington are already guaranteeing tipped workers $9 or more. New York should do the same. This is a high-cost place... there's no economic rationale for it,” he said.

A report by NELP shows a wage increase would affect nearly 230,000 tipped workers in New York State. 

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