Restaurants face ban on taking tips from staff

The Staff Canteen

Restaurants will be legally banned from taking tips from staff under new plans announced by Theresa May.

The Prime Minister Theresa May has revealed plans that restaurants and bars are to be banned from keeping any of the money handed over by diners as tips to waiting staff.

It has been reported that the ‘urgent’ legislation will be implemented to crack down on eliminating the practice of employers making deductions from tips. These proposed changes would affect around two million hospitality workers who are working in 150,000 hotels, pubs and restaurants throughout the UK.

The plans follow a government consultation which revealed that diners are overwhelmingly in favour of the tips they pay going to the people who serve them. 

Fred Sirieix, General manager at Galvin at Windows has asked for more clarification on the proposed legislation.

Louise Haigh, MP for Sheffield Heeley said:

Chef Damian Wawrzyniak agreed with the proposed legislation:

However, there have been some people questioning whether money yielded from tips should be allocated out to both front and back of house? One Twitter user said:

Several chain restaurants including Bella Italia, Cafe Rouge, Giraffe, Prezzo and Strada have faced criticism for making deductions of around an average of 10% of tips with the likes of Zizzi and Ask taking an eight per cent deduction on tips paid by credit or debit card.

TGI Fridays are also a restaurant chain that has come under fire earlier this year. Members of the Unite union who work for the American chain have protested over a decision to redirect revenue from tips paid on credit cards from waiting staff to boost the low wages of kitchen workers.

Speaking to the BBC, Unite regional officer Dave Turnbull said:

“Cracking down on tipping abuses was long overdue and the union would seek assurances that the legislation truly delivered fair tips.

There will be question marks as to whether it will deal with the myriad of scams some restaurants use to pilfer staff tips to boost their profits, in addition to dealing with the unjust situation at TGI Fridays, who use tips left for waiting staff to subsidise the low wages of skilled kitchen staff."

Mrs May said:

“The unemployment rate under this Government is now the lowest since the 1970s, but we want to ensure everyone is treated fairly in the workplace. “That’s why we will introduce tough new legislation to ensure that workers get to keep all their tips, banning employers from making any deductions. “It’s another way we are building an economy that works for everyone.”

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 1st October 2018

Restaurants face ban on taking tips from staff