Tipping transparency moved a step closer today with the launch of a landmark new code between Unite, Britain’s biggest union and the Association of Licenced Multiple Retailers (ALMR), the voice of the UK’s eating and drinking out sector.
Launched today (Sunday 10 September) the jointly agreed code aims to promote widespread good tipping practice by establishing a set of ‘good tronc principles’ for the fair and transparent pooling and distribution of tips, service charges and gratuities in the UK hospitality industry.
The working partnership between Unite and the ALMR, the leading industry voice of over 90 per cent of managed pubs, clubs, branded restaurants and cafes, comes out of a common commitment to clear up the confusion that exists around tipping for staff and customers.
The code establishes that when a company is involved in distributing tips, staff are fully engaged with a process that is genuinely independent, transparent and provides for genuine allocation, as well as for dispute resolution.
This good news comes as Unite continues to call on the government to release the findings of its consultation into tipping which is now 15 months overdue.
Commenting Unite regional officer, Dave Turnbull said: “Unite is pleased to have joined forces with the ALMR to create a code which seeks to bring greater fairness and transparency to tipping for customers and staff.
“Much of the confusion and mistrust around tips and service charges has been caused because customers and staff have been kept in the dark over how they are shared out and who gets what.
“The code is a work in progress with both sides committed to making this work in the interests of all concerned. At the heart of the Unite/ALMR code is an agreed position on the need for greater tipping transparency. Giving staff a say in how tips are shared out is a step in the right direction.”
ALMR chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “It is important that a workable and transparent code is in place to ensure that tips are dealt with fairly and legally.
“Venues carry out an important tax collecting role when they distribute tips and this must be acknowledged. We also want a system that rewards staff members and ensures that those employees working hard to earn their tips do not miss out.
“The ALMR is proud to have worked with Unite to establish a set of principles that offer our support to those people who make the UK’s innovative and lively eating and drinking out sector such a success. This code will provide employers, employees and customers with peace of mind that tips are being distributed legally and fairly.”
Customers can now tip in confidence at over 23,000 ALMR member outlets, secure in the knowledge that the pooling and distribution of tips and service charges fairly represents the interests of all staff who have contributed to the their experience.
Unite and the ALMR will monitor the implementation of the code and have established a joint process under which complaints of code violations raised by staff or customers can be investigated and tackled.