New Poll Shows an Overwhelming Majority of Tipped Workers in NY, MS, MA and PA Want One Fair Wage

For immediate release: December 11, 2019




New Poll Shows an Overwhelming Majority of Tipped Workers in NY, MS, MA and PA Want One Fair Wage 

NEW YORK, NY  — The new and expanded One Fair Wage coalition, in partnership with Lake Research Partners, will release Thursday the new findings of a comprehensive research with tipped workers in New York, Mississippi, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, documenting their overwhelming support for One Fair Wage — a policy that would require all employers to pay tipped workers the full minimum wage while retaining their tips on top. 

The poll — which interviewed 1000 tipped workers — is the latest to validate that they “strongly favor” One Fair Wage even after hearing oppositional messages, directly contradicting the false claims of the astroturf ‘Save Our Tips’ PAC funded by the National Restaurant Association that tipped workers do not support One Fair Wage in fear that they would lose their tips or their jobs. 

Findings of the poll also respond to the proposed regulatory changes by President Trump’s US Department of Labor, revoking the most critical federal protections for tipped workers, including the rule that requires employers to ensure that tipped workers are spending 80 percent of their time interacting with customers in order to be paid the subminimum wage. Even though some of these protections exist in various states, Trump’s regulatory changes would revoke most federal protections for tipped workers and avenues for them to reclaim their rights. Chris Williams, national legal expert on workers’ rights, will speak to the Trump regulatory changes, their impacts on millions of workers nationwide, and the reason that One Fair Wage is the most effective way to protect these workers.

The poll exemplifies the growth of the One Fair Wage campaign to many states and sectors beyond those represented by the Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United, the organization that initiated the campaign. Given that the campaign has outgrown the organization, campaign leaders will also announce Thursday the launch of a new, separate but aligned entity called One Fair Wage that is led by a broader coalition of tipped and subminimum wage workers, including but not limited to ROC.

The poll findings in New York, Massachusetts, Mississippi and Pennsylvania include:

  • Tipped workers “strongly favor” One Fair Wage
  • Tipped workers “strongly favor” state policy that would raise their wages to a full minimum, with tips on top
  • Tipped workers find it “very convincing” that One Fair Wage would give them a “better life” and “better wages”

The poll results show that workers overwhelmingly support One Fair Wage even after hearing oppositional messaging purporting that One Fair Wage would hurt workers’ tips and/or jobs. 

WHAT: National telebriefing on the release of a new poll of tipped workers in New York, Massachusetts, Mississippi and Pennsylvania.


Celinda Lake, Founding Partner, Lake Research Partners
Saru Jayaraman, President of One Fair Wage
Chris Williams, National Legal Advocacy Network
Representatives of One Fair Wage coalition 

WHEN: Thursday, December 12, 2019, at 9:00 AM 

WHERE:  ZOOM Meeting here


Subminimum wages are growing across the American economy. For decades, more than six million tipped workers in restaurants, nail salons, hair salons car washes, airports, parking lots have received a subminimum wage as little as $2.13 an hour from their employers, forcing them to rely on tips to feed their families – and tolerate inappropriate customer behavior in order to get those tips. 

The only solution for every worker in America is to receive a full, fair minimum wage from their employer. On December 12, One Fair Wage will also announce that it is spinning out of the Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United as a broader, separate but aligned entity including tipped workers from many different sectors. 

“Through our One Fair Wage, we will be advancing campaigns across the country to pass legislation in cities and states that will require all employers to pay all of their employees at least the full minimum wage,” said Saru Jayaraman, President of One Fair Wage. “We are truly excited for this opportunity and we will continue to stand together with workers and fight those who further betray hardworking families.”