TGI wait­ers go on strike over los­ing half of tips

Manchester Evening News - - NEWS - By ALEXAN­DRA RUCKI alexan­ @Alexan­draRucki

TGI Fri­days wait­ing staff are set to stage the first UK strike over tips.

Unite mem­bers of TGI Fri­days, in the intu Traf­ford Cen­tre branch, are to walk out in a row over plans to hand al­most half of tips paid on bank cards to back-of-house em­ploy­ees, in­clud­ing kitchen staff.

Wait­ing staff ar­gue the pol­icy change could see them los­ing out on £250 worth of wages a month but TGI bosses in­sist it is a fairer sys­tem.

The walk-out is ex­pected to take place next Fri­day, May 25.

Unite ar­gue the move has been in­tro­duced to top up the low wages of kitchen staff and to pre­vent the high turnover of back-of-house staff.

Wait­ing staff at branches in Mil­ton Keynes, Covent Gar­den and Hay­mar­ket Pic­cadilly are also launch­ing strike ac­tion next week.

Restau­rant work­ers in En­field, Lon­don and Gateshead Metro, in New­cas­tle, are also be­ing bal­loted on Fri­day, May 18, mean­ing there could be fur­ther strikes.

Dave Turn­ball, unite re­gional of­fi­cer, said: “Unite is warn­ing TGI Fri­days of a sum­mer of dis­rup­tion if man­age­ment don’t do the de­cent thing and sit down with us to find a sen­si­ble so­lu­tion to this dis­pute.

“Our mem­bers have sent a very clear mes­sage that they will not roll over and be bul­lied into hav­ing their tips taken, with­out any con­sul­ta­tion and with just two days’ no­tice - a move that will leave wait­ing staff up to £250 a month worse off.

“This isn’t about min­i­mum wage servers not want­ing to share with their kitchen col­leagues. It’s about a com­pany whose share­hold­ers have got­ten so greedy that they no longer want to pay their hard­work­ing staff any­thing above the bare min­i­mum.”

A TGI Fri­days spokesman said: “At TGI Fri­days, 100pc of tips go to our team mem­bers.

“The de­ci­sion to give 40pc of tips paid by card to the kitchen teams is to en­sure that all team mem­bers re­spon­si­ble for our guests ser­vice are re­warded.

“Servers con­tinue to keep 100pc of the cash tips they are given. These de­ci­sions are based on the Tron­c­mas­ters con­sul­ta­tion with team mem­bers.

“Tips and wages are en­tirely sep­a­rate and our tips pol­icy has no im­pact on salary.

“We will con­tinue to talk with our team mem­bers, our Fri­days Fam­ily, to clar­ify in­for­ma­tion and re­solve con­cerns.”

TGI staff are to strike over tips

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