Tipping point: Servers face groping and harassment for handful of dollars

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by beertunes, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (5,198) Sep 24, 2007 Washington

    In light of a couple recent threads involving fairly well-known craft breweries, I found this article interesting:
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  2. ZebulonXZogg

    ZebulonXZogg Zealot (587) May 5, 2015 Illinois

    My parents raised me to be a gentleman, I've been enthralled by beautiful women since i was 12, I've been happily married 35+ years, and I'm a "dirty old man, male chauvanist pig, but still a gentleman" at heart. I keep my mouth shut and my hands to myself, no matter who I'm with.
    As to my tipping habits, looks count. Good service, is paramount, great legs, hair, and smile make "it all good".
  3. utopiajane

    utopiajane Poo-Bah (2,512) Jun 11, 2013 New York

    I remember a fellow stroking my arm in a restaurant and as the 16 year old novice bus girl I did not like that nor did i even get a tip. I quit that job after the manager yelled at me for whatever. You should not touch a person or be mean to them either. I always say thanks too many times to the wait staff.
  4. TonyLema1

    TonyLema1 Poo-Bah (1,632) Nov 19, 2008 South Carolina

    I’m a male chauvinist that holds open doors, picks up the tab, and have, not much anymore, physically removed pieces of shit customers that went too far with my girls. I’m a very good tipper, women get more than men...just the way it is
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  5. Sound_Explorer

    Sound_Explorer Meyvn (1,265) Dec 29, 2013 Washington

    Can't we all agree for people to keep their hands off other people when it comes to server/customer relations (and others yes, but not getting into that here)? Keep the language to cordial and polite for anyone in a business/transaction setting. Men to women, or women to men. C'mon people.

    Tip according to how well they did their job, nothing more.
  6. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (1,981) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Another reason why waiters and bartenders should be paid a living wage. They're there to get us our drinks, not to laugh at our "jokes" or be eye candy. There are tons of lines that get crossed before touching people without their permission. All are unacceptable.
  7. JohnnyChicago

    JohnnyChicago Crusader (762) Sep 3, 2010 Illinois

    What a bunch of losers these customers in that article are. If you want a strip club, go to one. There are literally thousands to choose from.

    These people signed up to serve you beer and food, that’s it. Waving cash in someone’s face trying to get them to do something humiliating is beyond fucked up.

    Also, on a related note, tipping is toxic. Tipping, commission, and other auto meritocratic methods are just awful institutions.
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  8. JBogan

    JBogan Champion (806) Jul 15, 2007 California

    I worked 16 years at a high end Las Vegas resort, in a tipping position. And I think tipping is absurd. All tippers are doing is paying for the labor that the business should have been paying for in the first place. Do you tip the grocery cashier? The guy behind the counter at McDonald's? Businesses need to pay the employees a living wage. Until then, these businesses should send all these tippers a thank you card every year.
    utopiajane, tone77, croush and 6 others like this.
  9. Snowcrash000

    Snowcrash000 Crusader (710) Oct 4, 2017 Germany

    I'm not sure how this is specifically beer-related or why we needed yet another thread on it, to be honest.
  10. MilkLeg

    MilkLeg Initiate (142) Feb 8, 2016 Alberta (Canada)

    Why tip someone for doing their job and what is expected of them? I can pour a beer, I can drive a taxi and deliver food, I can and do cut my own hair. I do however tip my urologist , because I don't know how to pulverize my own kidney stones.
    BJC, PA-Michigander and SFACRKnight like this.
  11. rozzom

    rozzom Defender (663) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    Some interesting responses so far
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  12. rgordon

    rgordon Champion (822) Apr 26, 2012 North Carolina

    I had a very strong Mom. I have always had more female friends than male friends. I have always protected all of my friends when they needed help. I can honestly say that women are generally way better than men in all ways. Having been a bartender as a young guy, I suffered jerks badly and handled many very quickly and often to their drunken surprise. I always hated seeing a group of drunk guys come through the door, as an employee or a patron. I'm glad people are speaking out and that so many seem to be listening.
  13. Lahey

    Lahey Aspirant (284) Nov 12, 2016 Michigan

    I certainly don't harrass servers or bartenders. I've offered them a drink after I see them ending their shift. Once in a while I get a hug, but that's because I know that certain person from years of being a regular. If you're not a regular and especially if the person doesn't initiate contact, keep your hands to yourself.
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  14. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (1,896) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota

    I got chewed out by a college girlfriend the third time I held a door for her, and on the next occasion I didn't and she ran into it. Kodak moment. Other than that I hold doors for everyone.

    When I was in high school and working at K-Mart I had to keep asshat customers off the girls that worked there. Almost as if they felt that making minimal wage somehow meant the women were "cheap".
  15. readyski

    readyski Aspirant (220) Jun 4, 2005 California

    I have found that being courteous and polite goes a long way towards improving whatever activity you are doing. It would seem that some people "forget" that when drinking (no excuse), but sadly expected on occasion.
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  16. HeilanCoo

    HeilanCoo Initiate (0) Sep 11, 2014 North Carolina

    Ron Swanson?
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  17. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Meyvn (1,320) Sep 15, 2014 New York

    Don't grope, assault, harass, stalk, catcall or proposition women--or men. Period. I don't even approve of flirting with or hitting on strangers, but I suppose some female or male recipients might be more accepting of it.
    utopiajane likes this.
  18. Kemblain

    Kemblain Initiate (0) Jan 18, 2018 New York

    This just in: some people are assholes. More at 11.
  19. beertunes

    beertunes Poo-Bah (5,198) Sep 24, 2007 Washington

    It's interesting to me that some folks are focusing on the tipping. Especially in light of the recent Stone/Melvin events. The point of this is not to discuss tipping, yet again, but the sexual harassment aspect.
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  20. TrojanRB

    TrojanRB Meyvn (1,079) Jul 27, 2013 California
    Premium Trader

    Why do you think paying waiters and bartenders more will cause patrons to be better behaved?
  21. Kemblain

    Kemblain Initiate (0) Jan 18, 2018 New York

    They won't make the patrons well behaved, but it will remove the waiter/bartender from a situation where an unruly patron is also the difference between being broke or having $15 left at the end of the month. If they're no longer financially reliant on the patron themselves, they can simply refuse the patron. Once unruly patrons get refused service, they will either get their act together or no longer be there.
  22. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (1,981) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    What Kemblain said. If you read the article, it has servers wrestling with whether putting up with sexual harassment is worth it to get better tips.
    bbtkd likes this.
  23. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (1,896) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota

    Some asshat customers seem to feel that people making minimal wage while serving them are below them, and can be treated however they want. That compounds the issue of the staff putting up with more than they should, just to keep their jobs. Increasing wages could help, though some of the asshats will still need a pounding and/or public humiliation. Other customers, management, and the staff themselves need to feel empowered to call out the entitled bullies.
  24. Sweatshirt

    Sweatshirt Disciple (307) Jan 27, 2014 New Hampshire

    No one should be sexually harassing anyone...or tipping them.
    bbtkd likes this.
  25. TrojanRB

    TrojanRB Meyvn (1,079) Jul 27, 2013 California
    Premium Trader

    I did. Article covered people ranging from $8-40/hour.

    If it’s still happening to people that are making $40/hour, the issue cannot simply be addressed by increasing wages.

    I get that people making on the lower end of that range can feel locked into a job, because they are living paycheck to paycheck with very little margin for error...every dollar counts. People on the upper end of that range are in a different situation.

    But hypothetically, let’s say everyone gets an extra $5 per hour. Going from $8 to $13 is huge....and might give someone the flexibility or cushion to either a) quit a job after an incident, or b) complain to management about the patron.

    Under a),,,,it’s kind of a moot point. They may quit, but will be replaced, no change in behavior. Someone else will just be left dealing with the same patrons

    Under b) perhaps management will confront the patron (but they don’t want to lose the business either...more incentived by cost of meal than tips), or may have known about it all along anyways and not addressed it

    I really don’t see it as a wage issue. I see it as a management responsibility for creating a safe work environment. Freedom from harassment is a type of safety.
  26. MostlyNorwegian

    MostlyNorwegian Devotee (482) Feb 5, 2013 Illinois

    Since their checks in many states are $0.00, and it is your tipping that provides the roof over their head. Let's just note here right away that, for women, the first thing that will probably change is the amount of cleavage being shown.
    Any furthur questions?
    DrumKid003 likes this.
  27. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,489) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    While I completely agree there is an across the board problem and that it is a management responsibility, I don't think the degree of dependence on tipping for a living wage is irrelevant or does not play a role in the problem. The fewer servers who quit and the fewer complaints they make the less likely managment is to pay serious attention to the issue. If a low pay scale increases reluctance to quit or complain....
  28. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (1,981) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    I agree 100% that management has responsibility here. I also agree that people at many different wage and salary levels don't want to rock the boat at work and risk what they've got.

    All that said, $40/hour waitresses are the exception to the rule in this country. In many states, waitstaff are paid sub-minimum wage and rely almost entirely on tips for their livelihood. In my view, that makes it harder to complain. At the very least, it makes it harder to hire a lawyer to sue one's employer if they're not maintaining a harassment-free work environment.
  29. 5thOhio

    5thOhio Devotee (475) May 13, 2007 South Carolina

    The reasoning here about the "living wage" factor makes no sense.

    Which job would be easier to walk away from?
    $5/hr plus tips?
    $35/hr and no tips?

    The turnover rate for servers approaches 100% overall. Not that hard to leave one restaurant and get a job somewhere else. It's in the mind of the server if they think they can't walk away from a bad environment.
    #29 5thOhio, Mar 14, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
  30. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (1,981) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Just reread the article. It's people bringing home $8-$40/hour -- mostly in tips. It's not guaranteed income.
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  31. thebeers

    thebeers Poo-Bah (1,981) Sep 10, 2014 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    I agree management are responsible to protect their staff.

    Let's not pretend we don't get this though: The entire article is about waitstaff putting up with harassment and assault to get better tips. If people are paid a guaranteed wage for serving beer instead of just earning tips for "good service," they have a lot more flexibility in telling creeps to fuck off.
    Harrison8 likes this.
  32. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,489) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    And more flexibility in telling managment about the problem or in leaving their job thereby creating a training/replacement problem for managers.

    Edit: Also the servers who left a job because of poor working conditions are much more likely to tell their friends and co-workers about the management problem and that could create a problem for managment in finding replacements.
    #32 drtth, Mar 14, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
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  33. JohnnyChicago

    JohnnyChicago Crusader (762) Sep 3, 2010 Illinois

    I see where you are coming from, but I think that tipping is relevant to the conversation. Paramount to the discussion is adults needing to learn to keep their hands to themselves, but institutionalized bribery that upsets the power dynamic between a server and customer and encourages this kind of behavior should also be examined. To treat the sickness, you have address the actual issue, not just the symptoms.

    I read on a book once about reforming the police departments in major cities during the turn of the century. Bribery was incredibly common and attempts to curb it with internal punishments had only moderate success. Investigating the wages police officers were being paid (often very low) and adjusting them to a living wage proved to be much more effective. This seems like a similar situation.
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  34. TonyLema1

    TonyLema1 Poo-Bah (1,632) Nov 19, 2008 South Carolina

    I grew up in an Italian neighborhood in the 70s, you learn not to just tip, but to over tip... it’s just a thing we do. As far as harassment, I use the term, sweetie, doll, hon as interchangeable as I would bro, partner, boss etc. I don’t consider that inappropriate, especially since I’m dangerously close to “dirty old man” status!!
    TrojanRB likes this.
  35. glass_house

    glass_house Zealot (551) Jan 10, 2014 Ohio

    I, for one, enjoy seeing topics discussed here that are ancillary to the industry, even if they might be deemed controversial or political. It's depressing to think that rational conversation cannot be had on such subjects. Alas, such is the world of interwebz communication in 2018.

    Anywho, it is obviously a multi-faceted issue, but from my perspective the majority of responsibility lies with employers/management doing what they can to ensure a safe and secure work environment. In my short stint in the food service industry as a college student, I'm happy to say that was the case. Harassment was never tolerated, and there should never be an excuse for it. That being said, there is some gray area in regard to flirting and the like. A stunning 19 year old served me an ice cream cone in 2005 and I asked for her phone number. Thirteen years and two kids later, I think it's working out ok.
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  36. Ranbot

    Ranbot Zealot (525) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania

    So when you're shooting the shit with your friends or at a happy hour with work colleagues you call them sweetie, doll, and hon right? If not, then they aren't as interchangeable as you claimed.

    I also think if you look at those terms objectively, you'll see the female terms lean towards concepts of childishness, attractiveness, and generally less than you; while the male terms lean toward being equals (partner), family (bro), and higher status than you (boss). I'm not saying this use of language makes you personally inappropriate, a creep, bad tipper, etc. It doesn't... individuals and society are far more complicated than that... I'm not judging you personally. The trouble is society around us is a broad spectrum and some people will be creeps. Those unequal terms gives society's creeps more cover to hide behind, when the line is crossed is more fuzzy, and real creeps may honestly believe their inappropriate actions are OK.
    #36 Ranbot, Mar 14, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2018
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  37. JohnnyChicago

    JohnnyChicago Crusader (762) Sep 3, 2010 Illinois

    I call everyone, ‘dude’. Friends, strangers, my boss, even my wife sometimes. This solves two things. I never have to adjust my salutations, and if I forget someone’s name, they’ll never know! :grin:

    One time in my life someone gave me shit for using a ‘gender specific’ term for them. I solved this problem by never talking to that person again.:sunglasses:
  38. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Meyvn (1,188) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado

    It's also interesting that some people are trying steer the discussion away from where it was heading under it's own volition. Between the two issues, sexual harassment and socio economics, it doesn't surprise me that the BA demographic picks up the wage disparity argument and not the sex offenses. How many guys get their butt pinched at work?
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  39. TonyLema1

    TonyLema1 Poo-Bah (1,632) Nov 19, 2008 South Carolina

  40. Kemblain

    Kemblain Initiate (0) Jan 18, 2018 New York

    The other 'discussion' would be seven posts long.

    "Are these actions sexual harassment?"
    "Are there any situations where they aren't and would be acceptable?"
    "Do we condone any usage of them?"
    "Alright cheers, let's go get a pint".