Sat. Jun 15th, 2024

Waffle House raises employee wages after strikes and pressure from union organizers

By meerna Jun12,2024

Waffle House is raising wages for its American workers after year-long pressure from labor advocates.

In a video message to employees late last month, Waffle House CEO Joe Rogers III said base wage would increase to at least $3 an hour in June and then gradually increase to at least $5.25 an hour by June 2026. The base wage does not include tipped workers and will be higher in some states depending on minimum wage laws, Rogers said.

Rogers said the wage increases will be covered by higher menu prices, and in some rural markets wages will rise more slowly than in cities. The company also adds bonuses for seniority and allowances for working later shifts.

When contacted by The Associated Press, Waffle House did not confirm the wage increase Tuesday. The Southern Service Employees Union, a labor group affiliated with the Service Employees International Union, provided the AP with a link to the video.

Over the past year, the Southern Service Employees Union has staged strikes at Waffle House locations to demand higher wages, 24-hour security at restaurants and an end to the company’s practice of deducting $3.15 a day from workers’ wages for meals regardless of whether they eat on the job.

The group also asked the Department of Labor to review meal deductions.

“The raises show that the company is hot,” said Katie Giede, a Waffle House waitress in Atlanta who wants wages to increase to $25 an hour. “We will continue to organize and fight until we win.”

Waffle House has 2,000 restaurants across the United States, mostly in the South and Midwest. The company is headquartered in Norcross, Georgia.

By meerna

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