June 27, 2013
Starbucks Baristas Ordered To Share Tips

Starbucks baristas must now show their tips with shift supervisors, according to New York's highest court ruling.

The Court of Appeals came to this decision because they found out that supervisors do the same amount of work as baristas and deserve to get tips. However, baristas don't have to share their tips with assistant managers.

"We're pleased the court found our customers should have the option to reward our partners for providing great service, and we're pleased the New York Court of Appeals agreed our tipping policy is fair and appropriate under New York state law," Starbucks spokeswoman Jaime Riley said.

It is likely that the court's decision will impact policies at similar restaurants and coffee houses and will affect 42,000 businesses in the state of New York.

"In this business, many staff members share all kinds of responsibilities, and now we have an understanding of who can participate in the tip pool," association president Rick Sampson said.

Marco Tan, a customer at Starbucks, said that whoever is directly serving the customer should get the tip. "Why? Because they're helping you, and someone else isn't."

Evren Vural, on the hand, wasn't so sure about the decision.

"If the barista and the supervisor are doing some of the same work, they should share," he said, adding, however, that if the supervisor is not doing the work, "then it's not fair to share."

One assistant manager was upset about the ruling and sued to overturn the company’s policy that bars assistant managers from receiving those tips.

However, the Court of Appeals strongly suggest that assistant managers have too much authority to receive tips.

“We conclude that the line should be drawn at meaningful or significant authority or control over subordinates,” Justice Graffeo wrote. “Meaningful authority might include the ability to discipline subordinates, assist in performance evaluations or participate in the process of hiring or terminating employees, as well as having input in the creation of employee work schedules.”

Do you think shift supervisors at Starbucks should receive tips?

[Image via Shuttershock]