A friendly curling competition on Friday night in Houston brought out dozens of local residents. (Shiela Pepping photos)

  • Mar. 14, 2018 1:30 a.m.

The Retail Action Network is calling for B.C. to give liquor servers access to the minimum wage as B.C. gets a failing grade on its gender gap.

The Conference Board of Canada gave B.C. a failing grade (D) on its gender gap; it is 22.6 per cent compared to Belgium (3.3), Denmark (6.3), and Norway (7.1).

The minimum wage is part of that puzzle, as 62 per cent of B.C.’s minimum wage earners are women,” says Kaitlyn Matulewicz, coordinator with the Retail Action Network.

Last month the government announced that B.C. is raising the province’s minimum wage to $15.20 by 2021. But we are still waiting for the government to announce what will happen with minimum wage exemptions, including the liquor server minimum wage. Liquor servers in B.C. earn just $10.10/hr.

“81 per cent of food and beverage severs in B.C.’s full service restaurants are women. The lower liquor servers minimum wage disproportionately impacts women,” says Matulewicz.

“It is exploitative,” adds Matulewicz, “ my research shows that the dependence workers have on customers for tips leaves them vulnerable to enduring sexual harassment and sexualized behaviour from customers as a “price” to be paid for a tip — a form of institutionalized quid pro quo.”

This is backed up by research from the US Restaurant Opportunities Center United; women restaurant workers in states with a sub-minimum tipped wage are twice as likely to face sexual harassment than women restaurant workers in states that pay a full minimum wage to all workers.

The Retail Action Network is calling for the liquor server’ minimum wage to be eliminated.

Just Posted

Thirty fire starts in one day in northwest B.C.

None of the fires are posing threats to communities

Lightning strikes cause fires in area

Maxan Lake fire around 90ha in size

‘Daddy bonus’ common in B.C. workplaces, study finds

UBC researchers say dads don’t have to be number one in the office to get a raise

Better dangerous goods response wanted

Regional district directors to consider resolution tomorrow

115 new wildfires burning across B.C. due to 19,000 lightning strikes

More fires expected to start today, says BC Wildfire Service officials

B.C. BMX kid wows GoPro with homemade video

Eight-year-old Rex Johnson wins award for inventive video

Vancouver Canucks tab Quinn Hughes with No. 7 overall pick in NHL draft

University of Michigan standout was second defenceman picked in first round

Gun, drugs and cash seized in arrest of alleged B.C. fentanyl dealer

Vancouver Island man Brent Connors is facing nine charges in relation to investigation

Jogger spent two weeks in U.S. detention centre after accidentally crossing B.C. border

Cedella Roman, 19, crossed the border while out for a run

PHOTOS: Police rescue baby seal found on rocky B.C. shoreline

Marina Mammal Rescue Centre recommends residents observe from a distance

B.C. woman with severely disabled son keeps getting parking tickets

‘There has to be something they could do’

‘Creep off’ reporting system aims to track street harassment in Metro Vancouver

Text-based hotline launches to collect public reports on where and when harassment occurs

10 feet from home: B.C. grassfire offers stark reminder how quickly blazes burn

Kamloops woman among first people in B.C. to be told to evacuate home this wildfire season

Happy ending for orphaned bear cubs

Two orphaned bear cubs were captured in Castlegar and sent for rehabilitation.

Most Read