Leading article: Tipping point

This newspaper is proud of having campaigned against the exploitative practice of restaurants paying staff out of tips.

In response to "fair tips, fair pay", ministers last July agreed to crack down. This did not win praise in every quarter, and the British Hospitality Asssociation claimed the recession as grounds for a necessary delay in any legisation. The BHA suggested 45,000 jobs could be lost as a result of legal changes.

We are happy to report that a survey by a government department has laid such fears to rest, assessing the likely cost of a change to the law on tips at £90m, not £450m, as the BHA suggested. Our campaign, in other words, is a fair deal for everyone, not a kiss of death for restaurant owners.

We hope the Government has the courage of its convictions and shows resolve. Patrons have a right to know that when they tip staff they are supplementing their wages – not paying them.

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