Sen. Brown says new report shows why raising the minimum wage is critical for women, tipped workers

Resolution aimed at boosting tipped minimum wage, which currently stands at $2.13 an hour.
Norwalk Reflector Staff
Mar 26, 2014


A new report released today by the National Economic Council, the Council of Economic Advisers, the Domestic Policy Council, and the Department of Labor underscored the importance of raising the minimum wage for women.

The report shows that women account for 55 percent of Americans who would receive a raise under the Fair Minimum Wage Act and 72 percent of workers in predominantly tipped occupations.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) has been fighting to pass an increase in the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour and an increase in the tipped minimum wage, which stands at just $2.13 an hour and has not been raised in more than 20 years. Earlier this year, Brown introduced a Senate resolution aimed at boosting the tipped federal minimum wage, which would help lift hundreds of thousands of workers out of poverty.

“Raising the minimum wage is particularly important for women and their families,” Brown said. “The tipped minimum wage stands at just $2.13 per hour and many tipped workers, more than 70 percent of whom are women, have not received a raise in more than 20 years. Today’s report underscores the urgency of raising the minimum wage for all Americans, but for women in particular.”

When the tipped minimum wage was first established, it was 50 percent of the regular minimum wage, and 60 percent at its peak in the 1980s. Today, however, it stands at a mere 29 percent of the regular minimum wage. Brown is a cosponsor of the Fair Minimum Wage Act which would gradually raise the tipped minimum wage to 70 percent of the regular minimum wage. Brown’s legislation would also increase the regular minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from its current $7.25, and index it to inflation. That means that under Brown’s legislation, tipped workers would see their minimum wage increase to $7.10 or higher depending on inflation. 

According to the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), there are about 3.3 million tipped workers in the United States and about 60 percent of them are restaurant servers. Last month, Brown discussed the importance of raising the tipped minimum wage with Saru Jayaraman, the Co-Founder & Co-Director of Restaurant Opportunities Centers (ROC) United. Brown also released new data by ROC United that details the “State of the Tipped Worker.” According to the data, tipped workers have more than twice the poverty rate of the American workforce as a whole; and restaurant servers are nearly twice as likely to depend on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to feed their families. Just in Ohio, according to further ROC United research, there were 50,000 tipped workers in 2012 earning at or below the state tipped minimum wage of $3.85; and in 2012, there were 201,000 non-tipped workers earning at or below the state tipped minimum wage of $7.70.

According to the National Employment Law Project (NELP), the minimum wage has lost more than 30 percent of its spending power over the last forty years. But according to the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), raising the federal minimum wage for both tipped and non-tipped workers would lift 4.6 million people out of poverty. And NELP also concluded that the Fair Minimum Wage Act would boost GDP by nearly $33 billion and generate 140,000 new jobs over three years as workers spend their raises in their local businesses and communities.

Brown recently met with five Ohio businesses that support raising the federal minimum wage. They include the Yankee Kitchen, a diner in Youngstown; Grounds for Thought, a coffeehouse and bookstore in Bowling Green; Dempsey’s, a restaurant in Columbus; Brothers Printing, a print shop in Cleveland; and Synergistic Systems, a computer consulting company also in greater Cleveland. 



Women always seem to get the blunt end of the stick so thank you Senator Brown for fighting for women. Thank you for knowing the value of women in the workforce. I for one hope this legislation passes.


I will agree for once in my life with a Lib, buying women's votes. The waitress is a disgrace wage. Everyone's time is worth more than $2.13 an hour. I have worked around waitresses and most people are a bunch of cheap axxes. I do not support the increase for beginner jobs etc. Or part time .

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Has comrade Brown ever owned a small business or funded a a payroll, answer no, he has spent his life on the public dime.


So you prefer to keep women in their place? Nice guy!!

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Raise the wage, raise the prices, lower tips and less business, by the way genius, men also wait tables, don't be sexes...


You mean sexist, right?

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Sorry about the typo, guess I was distracted waiting for the waitress to bring me a 2nd cup of coffee and determining her tip on her worth.

youvegotobekiddingme're a real laugh a minute. You are the man in charge, aren't you? I generally tip women and men 20%. Hope you do the same.

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Actually I tip more than 20% for good service, that's what happens when your wife worked her way through college being a waitress.


What does him not ever owning a business have to do with any of this article?

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Easy to raise wages that small business owner will have to pay when he never had to fund a payroll, career politician..


So if a politician has never owned a small business they shouldn't propose any laws having to do with business?

JMOP's picture

Where do you think the money in the minimum wage raise will come from? Yep, the business owner.
It's not just women, think of high schoolers working at the local pizza place. Who's it gonna hurt? Food for thought.

In my opinon

Minimum wage in 1978 was $1.90, get real. The business owner has raised his or her prices to compensate with inflation into the year 2014, why shouldn't minimum wage be adjusted also? What can $7.35 buy? A loaf of bread and a gallon of milk. 3.65 for a gallon of gas to get to a job that pays $7.35 will hardly pay for upkeep on the vehicle let a lone utilities, house or rent payment so if minimum wage went to $10.00 an hour it isn't like anyone is going to live high on the hog.

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Sure would be nice if they had experience spending their own money in business before they made laws to spend other people's hard earned money.


Because his Master's Degree in Public Administration isn't good enough, right?

JMOP's picture

The key word is public, not private business administration. Isn't it so much easier to spend everyone else's money?

He also has a degree in Russian studies. Wonder why that is....hmm....


Re: "Russian studies."

Comrade Senator Brown just overlooks that 70 yr. Soviet "mistake" and thinks that the U.S. can do it better.

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When did he ever run a business, academic with no real life experience, career poltical hack.

JMOP's picture

Although I've never worked as a tipped employee, I've had family and friends that did. They made more money on a weekend, than I had working a 30 hour week. Some nights the low was around $50, but on a good night they could bring home $300.

So if this gets raised, will they keep the tip a standard 15%?
If my bill were $50 my tip would be $7.50. For that hour, at just my table they would make $15.20.

Btw, if I get excellent service, I always tip 50%, anything else I always give 20%.


If the value of the dollar were stable, raising the min. wage would not be necessary.

$1.00 in 1990 is worth 55¢ in 2014.

Thank the Federal Resv. for trashing the dollar since it's founding.

One part of govt. creates the problem, another part of govt. feels the need to solve it.



If anyone took the time to read about the Federal Reserve, they would understand how important it's functions are in keeping our currency more stable, to protect from constant banking/financial disasters, and to protect consumers. If, on the other hand, you're a paranoid conspiracy theorist who touts themselves a 'Libertarian' without knowing what the term really means, they you're likely part of the problem, and not the solution.


Re: "currency more stable,"


Yea, according to the Fed minutes, those central planning geniuses had no idea of the extent of the damage at the end of '08.

Inflated wealth is false wealth and everything eventually reverts to the mean.


Re: "paranoid conspiracy theorist"


2000 - Tech Wreck

2007-08 - Housing Crash

20__ - Sovereign debt crisis.

Yea, believe that there will NEVER be another Fed induced financial crisis. :)




Glad you agree.

Socialism makes us all equal, equally poor

- Soviet Eastern European saying.


@contango...Are you poor?


Thank you for this post betrump. Even though people don't want to admit it if it wasn't for the Federal Reserve our county would have went into a depression back in 2008. The Federal Reserve has been purchasing America's debt in order to keep interest rates and inflation low. The reason why the interest rates just increased was because of a reduction in spending by the federal reserve due to the Dodds-Frank act. They went from buying 85B of debt to 75B monthly. People do need to read up on the Federal Reserve and find out more about it. I'm not saying they should be trusted or solely be left to make financial decisions for this country. But when outstanding consumer debt reaches 3.4 trillion and student loan debt is over a trillion then someone needs to help or we'll be paying out the nose with high interest rates.


Hey JMOP, where are those places you are speaking of, around here? Do they need help?

JMOP's picture

Yes. In Huron and Erie counties. I'm sure they're hiring. Gotta scratch Roadhouse off the list though.


Funny as it is, people in 3rd world country all get paid the same wage, little as it is. leaving and tip is considered being a show off. Here it is expected and if you don't tip your a cheap ahole.

Dr. Information

The value of the American dollar has been devalued by the FED RES. Great work, said no one ever.