Viewpoint: Will Initiative 77 reduce wage inequalities? We cannot say.

The D.C. Council has taken a first vote to repeal Initiative 77, a measure to bring the minimum wage for tipped workers to the same level as all other workers. With the D.C. heading toward a second and final vote to repeal, organizations supporting this initiative are putting out a lot of analysis to buttress their claims.

One such study published by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) received a lot of attention. The study uses data from the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey to make a case that (a) wage gaps between tipped and untipped workers in D.C. are wider than in places where tip credits are not allowed; (b) the gaps are larger for minorities, workers with lower levels of education or workers who are single parents; and (c) the gaps will decline and fewer workers will be in poverty if the District continues with the current plan to eliminate tip credits.

This study fails to meet standard tests of reliability, and its findings should be ignored.

Like with any other survey,…

Read the full story from the Washington Business Journal.



Advertiser Content