31 March 2016

Bad Bosses Strike Back!

In Oregon Maine, where they are proposing raising the minimum wage, along with eliminating the sub-minimum wage for tipped workers, the worst boss in the world wrote an editorial saying that her workers hated the idea of being paid fairly.

Her workers responded by resigning en masse and described their dysfunctional workplace, and their dysfunctional boss, in exquisite detail:
Oh hey, it’s a Maine story (about the minimum wage, no less) that doesn’t directly involve Gov. Paul LePage!

Five servers at a restaurant in Portland called Five Fifty-Five have quit in one hell of a mic drop, giving their notice in a Portland Press Herald op-ed. The inciting incident was when their boss, Michelle Corry, wrote an op-ed that claimed to speak for her employees about the citizen-initiated ballot referendum in the state to both increase the minimum wage to $12 and eliminate the tip credit (also known as the “sub-minimum wage”). It’s the latter point that had Corry in such a huff.


Opponents of eliminating the tip credit say that doing so would bring about a restaurant industry apocalypse and there would be much rending of garments and gnashing of teeth. Restaurant owners in states like California, Washington, Oregon, and Minnesota, which pay their servers a guaranteed living wage and, at last check, had not devolved into a Road Warrior-esque hellscape, say “Um, not so much?”

Right, back to Maine and Michelle Corry’s op-ed. So, Corry argued strongly for a counter-proposal to the ballot initiative that would raise the minimum wage to only $10 and keep the tip credit intact. Since at last blush 75 percent of the state is in favor of raising the minimum wage, anti-minimum wage douchebuckets (even LePage — dammit, he showed up in this post despite our best efforts) know they’re going to have to compromise at least a little bit here, and the counter-proposal is that compromise. But in arguing for it, Corry tried to speak for those it would directly affect:

Ask any tipped employee at a restaurant near you if they would prefer to make a set wage or hustle and create their own destiny. The employees at my restaurant would always choose their own initiative.
Putting words in her servers’ mouths turned out to be a less-than-ideal move on her part.

There have been many issues at the restaurant, from capricious schedule changes to questionable practices on wages and tips. This latest insult of our boss falsely claiming to speak publicly on our behalf on an issue we care deeply about is just the final straw. We are submitting our notice and will be leaving her employment.

Translation: whatever the incredibly white Maine equivalent is of “oh HELL naw.”
The kicker to all of this is that Michelle Corry is the vice chair of the Maine Restaurant Association.

It is highly unlikely that I am going to be in Portland, Maine in the near future, but if I do, I won't be going to Five Fifty-Five.

H/t Atrios.


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