Today, ROC applauded Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Rep. George Miller (D-CA-11) for introducing the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013, new legislation that would raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 and require that the tipped minimum wage be set at 70% of the regular minimum wage, a move that will help lift many restaurant workers out of poverty.

“We applaud Sen. Harkin and Rep. Miller for introducing a new minimum wage bill that is inclusive of all workers in the United States, including those who work for tips,” said Saru Jayaraman, co-founder and co-director of ROC United.  “For decades, the minimum wage for tipped workers has been stuck at just $2.13 per hour.  For too many restaurant workers that means that after long, sometimes back-breaking shifts feeding others, they can’t put food on their own tables.  The Fair Minimum Wage Act introduced in Congress today will go a long way toward guaranteeing that tipped workers earn income they can count on. It’s a long overdue step that recognizes the value of hard work and provides a path to the middle class for millions of Americans.”

Workers who receive at least $30 in tips per month are subject to a subminimum wage, which has been frozen at $2.13 per hour since 1991.  The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 would increase the tipped minimum wage 95 cents per year until it reaches 70% of the regular minimum wage through a series of at least six increases up to $7.10 (or more if the regular wage has risen above $10.10 because of inflation).  The wage would then be pegged to 70% of the regular minimum wage as increased thereafter.

Get more info about the Fair Minimum Wage Act here

Track the act’s progress by joining the national conversation on raising the tipped and full minimum wage: