To tip or not to tip?

Dear Editor,

The average American worker making $7.50 an hour in a 30 hour workweek grosses $225. $225 times 52 weeks and you get $11,700. Business owners often stay under that 30 hour limit so as not be required to provide benefits to their employees. Now if a worker is fortunate enough to get $10 an hour that’s $300 a week times 52 is $15,600.

The current 2018 qualification levels for Federal Poverty are one person $12,140, two person household $16,460 and 3 persons $20,780. So this makes it very clear that the working poor definitely qualify for benefits depending on the agency’s requirements of pre-tax or post-tax (gross or net) income.

A recent research article from the Center for Rural Pennsylvania newsletter Rural Perspectives about the lingering effects of the Great Recession (Dec. 2007-June 2009) in our Commonwealth are a rude awakening of how devastating the recession was and continues to be in rural areas.

Urban PA workers earn 28% more than rural workers. In the last 10 years the average PA weekly wage has only increased from $744 to $806.

So when you are out to eat at a local restaurant getting good service, when you are going through a drive-through where the friendly person waits on you through a window displaying a tip jar or when you’ve received good service from a gasoline attendant, newspaper carrier, etc. REMEMBER THAT A TIP IS A WELCOME DEMONSTRATION OF THANKS FOR A JOB WELL DONE BY A LOWER PAID WORKER. Whether cash or an added 15% on your charge card, the extra income may indeed go for necessities of life.

Respectfully submitted,

Karen Davis,


P.S. Be reminded also that restaurant tips may be shared with the cook, bussers, dishwashers besides the actual person who waited on your table.