On June 19th, D.C. voters will be asked if they want to eliminate the tipped minimum wage. Currently, employers must pay tipped workers a base wage of $3.33 per hour. If the workers’ tips do not bring them up to the minimum wage of $12.50, the employer must make up the difference. 

Initiative 77, brought by Restaurant Opportunities Center United, would eliminate the lower tipped minimum wage, if passed. Supporters of the initiative say it would bring financial security to workers and curb sexual assault and racism in the restaurant industry. Opponents argue it would cut tipped workers’ pay.

City Paper hosted a live forum at Black Cat all about the initiative. Food editor Laura Hayes and Loose Lips reporter Andrew Giambrone moderated the conversation between supporters and opponents of the initiative. If you were unable to attend the forum or have lingering questions about Initiative 77, this is the podcast for you. When you’re done with that, learn more about the initiative 

In print and online City Paper is answering audience questions that we weren’t able to address during the forum. The first set of those questions is available online, and the second will be in print this week. You can also learn more about the initiative by reading our May cover story on the issue.

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Music for this episode was byLee Rosevere and Jahzzar, used under the Creative Commons license.

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