A bill aimed at safeguarding employees’ tips completed its second stage in Dáil Éireann this week. But the National Minimum Wage (Protection of Employee Tips) Bill, which has already completed all stages in the Seanad, will be blocked by the Government.
The Bill has been strongly supported by the ONE Galway movement, made up of Fórsa and other unions, student unions and community groups. The movement has campaigned for laws to protect tips intended for staff, and to stop the exploitation and precarious nature of work in the hospitality sector.
The legislation, which was initiated by Sinn Féin senators, would ban employers from withholding tips and other gratuities intended for staff. The proposed law would also require premises to clearly display the establishment’s tipping distribution policy.
But employment minister Regina Doherty said the Government disagreed with the specifics of the bill, and said she wold bring forward another. A similar approach led to significant delays in legislating on gender pay gap reporting last year.
ONE Galway dismissed the Government’s approach as being “in line with the demands from the Restaurant Association of Ireland (RAI) who want to retain access to tips, which they estimate make up approximately 10% of their revenue.”
The Government has said it will use the controversial ‘money message mechanism’ to block the legislation.