From the front lines: Why we should stop house tips

(This is an email from a front line worker in the service industry who wants to tell her personal story about why we need to stop the practice of house tipping. Minor edits have been made for clarity and to anonymize her)

"I work in the service industry here in Edmonton. Have been a professional server for many years now. My current owners (of a multi-location franchise) increased our house tip out to 7.5% today in time with the minimum wage hike. In order to compensate their management and essentially pay for our wage increase. The staff, as you can imagine, are in an uproar over it. Some exceptionally frustrated, myself included. Unfortunately, I'm the bearer of bad news with my coworkers--informing them of the complete legality of this policy.

I would very much like to publicly share the link to http://stophousetips.ca (for the plethora of staff they employ). However, if not done anonymously, if I share it publicly--it has been implied that I will face immediate termination. Any mention of disapproval or frustration over this will not be tolerated. We are practically being gag ordered and having our right to free speech on the matter revoked. Any suggestions? Any way to call them out on social media and mass share that link without getting my butt fired tomorrow? Your thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks!

On a side note: As you undoubtedly understand--that 7.5% tip out is required on total sales. Which at an "average" of 15% in gratuities equates to half of our money. But it behooves me to mention: We do NOT have an auto-gratuity for large parties at our disposal- they will not permit it. And we are NOT permitted to bypass tip out on bills with zero gratuity paid. This will often mean us paying out of pocket to serve tables in their restaurant and equate to the owners taking more from us than we take home. Infuriating. And as a long time professional in this industry--I'm on board with your campaign."

Your provincial government has the power to stop house tipping--have you reached out to your representative yet? Use our tool below to reach out.