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Last year we spoke with several minimum wage workers living and working in Brooklyn, most of them immigrants, primarily Spanish speakers, and holders of positions where earning decent money depended on the kindness of the people they were serving. Up until now, the sub-minimum wage standard in New York City held that employers could pay their workers as little as $5 an hour, as long as they were earning enough tips to round that number...
At first glance, the Queens Center Mall is no different from any mall you’d find in any suburb in the country. There’s an H&M, an Applebee’s, and kiosk workers baiting you with hair straighteners. Escalators gently glide up and down, connecting wide hallways interspersed with families and teenagers. There’s a gentle echo and general sense of warm, fluorescent well-being. But starting in 2009, this mall, owned by the Macerich Company, was the site of a...
Last week when Grub Street published a slew of articles discussing the Tipping Economy, I was reminded how a lot of important issues are glossed over in the debate about whether or not the tip system is antiquated, inefficient, or just plain unfair.  Grub Street's series is timely because through December, the Department of Labor is parading a Wage Board all over the state for the purpose of hearing testimony by service industry interest groups,...
Mayor Bill de Blasio is hopping on the executive order train—seemingly the only able to leave the station in an election year. He plans to sign an order today that will broaden the city's living wage law to raise the hourly minimum wage for workers who do not receive benefits, from $11.90 to $13.13. It may not seem like a tremendous hike, but from week to week, $1.23 more an hour is significant. In the...

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