Servers will now be paid at least $12 an hour.Joe’s Crab Shack is now the first major restaurant chain to start paying workers a living wage.
The seafood chain will experiment with dropping tipped-wages in 18 of its stores, the head of its parent company said.
“Servers, hosts, bartenders are paid no higher, fixed, hourly wages,” Ignite CEO Ray Blanchette said, according to CNBC. “It’s expected to result in an improved team atmosphere, a significant reduction in turnover and greater financial security for the employees.”
Employees who were once paid around $2 an hour plus tips will now be paid at least $12 an hour, Blanchette said. Experienced staff stand to make even more.
According to Restaurant Business, the company actually began rolling out the policy in August but only announced the change in a call with investors last week.
The move follows famed New York restauranteurs Danny Meyer’s announcement last monththat all of his eateries were getting rid of tipping. Celebrity chef Tom Colicchio is also experimenting with the policy.