Monday, October 12, 2009
Gimme A Break
When I mentioned the fact that waiters down South seem to accept the fact that they get paid peanuts so that their employers do not have to add more to the price of an item on the menu to cover their labour costs and risk customers fleeing elsewhere to eat , this is what he said. Let's say all the wages went up to $8 an hour and the cost of the meal went up proportionately on the menu , everyone is still going to go out and eat. Everyone will pay the added amount to a menu item to cover the cost to get fed. It is not like people are all of a sudden going to boycott eating out.
Well that makes perfect sense! Think about it. Cars cost $30,000 today but in the 60's they were $5,000. We didn't stop buying cars because there was an increase in price did we? We wouldn't cancel our phone cause the price went up to cover inflation would we?
Yet the employees who work for these and other companies are making a lot more than 40 years ago. Do you see what I am saying and what my friend accurately pointed out?
Why if you are a waiter should be so concerned anyway about labour costs? What about making a living? In my opinion and this may seem a bit rude but your employer if they are holding that over your head and giving you labour costs and I cannot pay you more than $2-4 dollars an hour stories well that my friends is bullshit and they are just being freaking greedy by brainwashing you.
Maybe what they really should be thinking about is guaranteeing that some employees will think about staying long term and putting a plate in front of the guest that is value driven and not cost conscious.
What has to happen is for everyone in that region to raise the wage for servers and bartenders. Pass the cost onto the consumer who will pay for anything cause we all know they do anyway from cars , houses , boats , toys etc. and then and only then will they walk into a restaurant and see a server that was there the last time they ate there. That is a happy waiter or bartender.
Here I notice that no matter what the price of the menu item is I still get tipped the same. If an item costs $40 or $80 I make the same percentage plus I get a paycheque that is worth something every two weeks and believe me the money comes in handy. At $2 an hour as some places a server earns in the States , even if I worked 40 hours a week I would still make less than half what I do now on my paycheque working half that amount.
I am sorry but the States is the last G7 country to have workers put up with that bullshit. Some people may not like what I am saying here but you all have to do something and get the government on your side. The States is not a third world country but people making $2.13 an hour is absurd!
No security , no benefits , no pension , no respect from your employer , no life , fuck all ! All for the privilege of working for 2 -4 dollars an hour. And hope for the best that you make anything after making sure you tip out everyone and pay your taxes on time through your employer.
Gimme A Break!!
Radio talk show host of "The Hospitality Industry News Network" and author of "You Only Live Once" about his early years traveling around and working on ships and foreign countries Steven blogs about his thoughts on the restaurant industry as he sees it today.
Check out his web site at www.stevennicolle.com for more information.