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Restaurant Opportunities Centers United

www.rocunited.org
COUNTER
ATTENDANTS
West Virginia follows federal minimum wage
guidelines. The federal minimum wage is
$7.25, but the tipped minimum wage is even
lower. It has stood at $2.13 for the last
23 years. In 1991 it was pegged at 50% of
the federal minimum wage. In 1996 it was
officially depegged from the minimum wage
and has remained frozen ever since. Including
tips, tipped workers in West Virginia earn a
median wage of only $8.00 — equivalent to
$16,640 for a full-time year-round employee.
However, tipped workers generally are allowed
part-time schedules that vary by season. Seven
states have eliminated the tipped minimum
wage — in those states tipped workers receive
the full minimum wage.
The Rising American Electorate refers to the
demographic groups that are growing the
most rapidly, historically with lower voter
participation rates, but whose growing civic
engagement has been crucial in tipping the
scales in recent elections. Tipped workers
are primarily women, nearly 40% are moms,
and although many are married, nearly
half of these are single moms. Although the
median age for tipped workers is 31, half of
them are younger. And they are racially diverse,
overrepresented by Latinos, Asians, and African
Americans compared to the broader workforce.
They are also a highly educated group. Tipped
workers are a snapshot of the RAE.
TIPPED WORKERS AND THE RISING AMERICAN ELECTORATE
THE STATE
OF TIPPED
WORKERS
In West Virginia there are nearly 26,000
tipped workers, and 68% of these work in the
restaurant industry. The restaurant industry
employs nearly 10% of the workforce and
is one of the fastest growing sectors of the
US economy. Unfortunately, the restaurant
industry offers several of West Virginia’s
lowest paid jobs. Six of the ten lowest paid
occupations are in the restaurant industry,
and one of these is a tipped occupation.
TIPPED
MINIMUM WAGE
$2.13
MINIMUM WAGE
$7.25
MEDIAN WAGE FOR
TIPPED WORKERS
INCLUDING TIPS
$8.00
GENDER
78%
2
2
%
TIPPED WORKERS WHO
WORK IN RESTAURANTS
68%
LOWEST PAID
TIPPED OCCUPATION
WEST VI RGI NI A
In states with a tipped minimum wage of $2.13,
the poverty rates for workers of color is nearly
double that of the seven states without a tipped
minimum wage, with one in four living in poverty.
WHITE PEOPLE OF COLOR ALL
POVERTY RATES IN $2.13 STATES
16% 25% 20%
POVERTY RATES IN STATES WITH NO TIP CREDIT
13% 14% 14%
TIPPED WORKERS AND THE RISING AMERICAN ELECTORATE
White 89%
Latino 4%
Black 3%
Asian 2%
Other 2%
<_
24 36%
25-34 21%
35-44 16%
45+ 28%
RACE
AGE
HIGHER EDUCATION
EDUCATION
PARENTS WITH CHILDREN
ON FREE LUNCHES
41%
MARITAL &
PARENTAL
STATUS
45
%
Married 36%
Parents 32%
Dads 22%
Moms 35%
Single Moms 16%
P
O
V
E
R
T
Y
TIPPED RESTAURANT WORKERS
live in POVERTY at
at 3x the rate of
the West Virginia
workforce.
RAISE THE MINIMUM WAGE
Living off tips is precarious, but it doesn’t have
to be this way. Raising the minimum wage and
eliminating the tipped credit would provide
a significant stimulus to the U.S. economy in
tipped wages alone, providing a boost to local
economies and the broader food industry, as well.
FOR MORE INFO rocunited.org/stateoftippedworkers/
The industry projects employment will continue
to grow at the rate of 5% over the next decade.
H
INDUSTRY PROJECTED SALES 2014

2.2 BILLION
B
I
L
L
I
O
N
I
N
D
U
S
T
R
Y

G
R
O
W
T
H
52%
P
O
V
E
R
TY

R
A
T
E
P
O
V
E
R
TY

R
A
T
E
T
I
P
P
E
D

R
E
S
T
A
URA
N
T

W
O
R
K
E
R
S
T
I
P
P
E
D

WO
R
K
E
R
S
29
%
25
%
WORKERS ON
FOOD STAMPS
2X REST OF WV
WORKFORCE
17%
31
MEDIAN AGE
of tipped
worker moms
are single moms
MINIMIM
WAGE
$10.10
$12.00
$15.00
TIPPED
STIMULUS
$12.7
$19.4
$30.1