I work as a waiter and I'm a Unite member. I've just come back to work after being off sick for a month.
We have a new manager who's also the Tronc Master in charge of the Service Charge that gets put into our pay packet. When I've been off sick in the past I've still received my average service charge. This new guy says he isn't going to pay me. So now I've lost around £100.
I went to see my Restaurant Branch rep and showed her my slips from
the last time I was off sick. She says this is good enough evidence to be able to run a grievance that I can win.
Then she told me something that really shocked me. She said if my case went to a tribunal there would be a registration fee of £160 and a hearing fee of £230 and it's non refundable and what's more my employer doesn't have to pay any fees whatsoever. And I thought what kind of justice is that? You have to pay £390 for a claim that's worth £100? So it's like paying a fine when you're the one who's had something illegal happen to them. And I thought it's lucky I have the union to fight for me.
Then I heard that Business Secretary Sajid Javid claims he's so concerned about what is going on with waiters' tips that he wants to investigate. And I thought what a hypocrite. His admin fee is even bigger than what the worst restaurants charge!