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Do you give as much thought to restaurant workers as you do to...


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#1 SusieQ

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:27 PM

http://truth-out.org...organic-chicken

Just found this interview with organizer Saru Jayaraman of Restaurant Opportunities Centers United. She makes a lot of sense. The title is rather provocative, but it's a well-written article with lots of information about what this group has been doing to help restaurant workers. At least that's my viewpoint after reading it. I hope I've posted this in the right spot.

I see my title was truncated. It should read "Do you give as much thought to restaurant workers as you do to your organic chicken?"

Edited by SusieQ, 28 January 2013 - 04:28 PM.


#2 Jim9

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:19 PM

The major issue regarding organic food for most people is how it impacts their personal health. Sure there are other concerns many people have such as how the animal is treated but the people for whom that is the major factor are obviously known as vegans. It is hard to claim your overriding concern is about the animal when you end up killing and eating it. The article may actually be worthwhile but with such a juvenile title I suspect most people will ignore it and assume it is activist over-hype. There's nothing particularly special or noteworthy about restaurant workers versus people in any other job.

#3 Edward J

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:30 PM

There's nothing particularly special or noteworthy about restaurant workers versus people in any other job.


Try working in a restaurant for a few months.

Just try it, it's free!

#4 DiggingDogFarm

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 07:11 PM

Over 12 million Americans desperately unemployed and.........oh, never mind!!!!!!!!



~Martin

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#5 Tri2Cook

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 04:32 AM

"Do you give as much thought to restaurant workers as you do to your organic chicken?"

Speaking as a restaurant worker, not really... but I'm usually not considering whether or not I'd like to eat a restaurant worker.
It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

#6 Jim9

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 09:16 AM

Try working in a restaurant for a few months.

Just try it, it's free!


Umm, yeah I have in pretty much all areas of it. It’s manual labor and no different than any other manual labor position. Sure it’s hard work but so is construction or any other job where you actually have to actually work versus sit in an office all day.

#7 Edward J

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 07:01 PM

No arguements about manual labour. What's different is the compensation and benefits--the hospitality biz is one of the poorest paid.

I don't know about your area/State, but around here even the lowest guy on the totem pole in construction will NOT start at minimum wage, it will be at least 3-4 dollars higher. S/he will not work weekends or evenings as part of the job, those shifts are paid at a higher rated, and benefits are usually better, even paid lunch and coffee breaks.

The lowest guy in the hospitality biz ges paid bare minimum, or even lower if they owners can get away with it. Benefits are nil, weekends and evenings are expected.

Apples and oranges, construction and hospitality. The construction owner submits a bid or quote for the job--so much for materials, so much for rentals, so much for labour,etc. Profit is calculated and expected.

A restaurant never knows if it will meet minimum sales required for that month, nothing is guaranteed.

#8 DiggingDogFarm

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 07:34 PM

I've done restaurant work in a few different capacities when I was younger.

It was a piece of cake compared to farm labor, a BIG piece of cake!!!!!

Many don't know that some small farms are exempt from both minimum wage AND overtime requirements.

So let's not forget, there's always someone who has it worse off then a minimum wage dish washer or busser!!!

~Martin

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#9 Ashen

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 01:01 AM

nope. I don't think it is usual that a minimum wage job is paid minimum wage.
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#10 Edward J

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 07:38 AM

nope. I don't think it is usual that a minimum wage job is paid minimum wage.


I see. How about this then. A cook with a minimum of one year culinary education and 4-5 years working experience will usually earn under $15/hr? Would you consider that a minimum wage type entry level job? You also have to take in to account that a dishwasher has the potential to poison every customer, and bring a working kitchen to screeching halt.

Digging dog, yes you make a good point, but not only farm workers and hospitality, but retail sales are paid lousy.

#11 sigma

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 08:21 AM

Digging dog, yes you make a good point, but not only farm workers and hospitality, but retail sales are paid lousy.


There is a reason for this. The marginal value they provide is vanishingly small and they are basically undifferentiated commodities.

Edited by sigma, 30 January 2013 - 08:22 AM.


#12 DiggingDogFarm

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 08:51 AM

Another area where the pay is nonsense is personal care.......been there, done that too.....I had a lot of really bad jobs years ago!!!! LOL

Such is life in rural America.

I worked with the profoundly disabled...minimum wage...very long hours....a ton of responsibility (not just in the obvious care, but the not so obvious, like dispensing some VERY dangerous drugs!) You could land your butt in the hoosegow over an innocent mistake!!!!

Overtime applies, but for the pay period, not on a weekly basis. The pay period was 2 weeks, so overtime applied to a total of 80 hours over the course of 2 weeks!

Okay!

Problem is, they could work you 60 hours in one week (often double shifts) and just 20 hours the next and not pay a dime in overtime!!!

I sympathize with minimum wage restaurant workers, I really do, I've been there and done it...it sucks....but believe me...there are jobs out there that are a LOT worse!!!!!


~Martin

Edited by DiggingDogFarm, 30 January 2013 - 08:53 AM.

~Martin
 
Unsupervised rebellious radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, self-reliant homesteader and adventurous cook. Crotchety cantankerous terse curmudgeon, nonconformist and contrarian who questions everything!
 


#13 HungryC

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 09:03 AM

I have to agree with Martin and several other posters. Some jobs are still paid by piecework....imagine picking crabmeat by hand, paid only on the volume you produce. Yes, it is still picked by hand, even in the USA. Ditto for crawfish. Both of these are seasonal jobs, so you won't have year round employment either.

#14 radtek

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 10:02 AM

Hah! I have two different part-time jobs with a fixed hourly rate of $23/hr. No benefits of any sort except being able contribute to a 403b which will certainly not be matched by any contributions from the employers. In fact last week at one location everyone classed as "fulltime" got a 2% raise. But I'm exempt from that. As the low man on the totem pole I can only hope for a full time position to eventually open up and be selected for it. The sooner I get out of the workforce completely the better as far as I'm concerned.

You can still get screwed even at higher pay-grades. The work is not difficult but with periods of high stress- much like restaurant work- which incidentally is not really manual labor. Go work in construction or something else similar outside and learn what real manual labor is.

Having read the articles from the link and taken them with a grain of salt... even so they further reinforce my stance on not letting a dime of my money go towards the likes of Papa-Johns' John Schnatter and Applebees' Zane Tankel.

Also, "organic" isn't high on my list of importance. If that is one's criteria for choosing dining spots so be it. Based on my observations, people who place a supreme importance on such things usually give little thought to those that serve it. They are more concerned about the chicken.

#15 annabelle

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 01:28 PM

I've been salaried for ages. I wouldn't have a clue what constitutes 'normal hours' or overtime pay.

I'm with radteck on organic not being high on my priority list. It's fine if you are passionate about it and have enough disposable income to feed your family nothing else. I don't care for the snooty attitude of the "I'd never eat anything that isn't organic! I'd rather starve!" Most people don't have that luxury.