Tip Your Service Workers Especially Generously Now.

You know to wash your hands, stay home if you’re not feeling well, and resist the urge to pile up hand sanitizer . But there is another task you can accomplish if you feel good and are continuing your mostly normal daily life: tip generously.

Of every company that announces that its employees will be working from home for several weeks, there is another that cannot offer this due to the nature of their work. The guy who makes you a salad at lunchtime can’t do it on Slack. Manicurist cannot file nails via video chat.

Service workers are vulnerable not only to the risks of coronavirus infection, but also to the negative impact on their income. Service staff are less likely to get paid sick leave or any other reason, which can put them in a difficult position if they start to feel unwell.

And if the business slows down, they may find that their shifts will be reduced – or worse, their position will be completely cut. Eater found that revenues for some New York City restaurant groups fell between 25% and 70% as people abandoned their plans to dine out.

Even if the service worker adheres to their normal working hours, less attendance means less tip, which can quickly lead to financial instability for those who rely on these tips.

It’s true that some of the larger service-oriented companies are making plans to help their employees – Instacart and DoorDash have announced that any of their quarantined employees could receive up to two weeks of sick pay.

But this policy only applies to a small fraction of the giants. And with campaigns urging people not to panic but mostly stay home , this is bound to be a tough time for workers who spend their shifts talking to the public and relying on advice.

While it may not be possible for you to double your normal tip rate, consider increasing it by a dollar or two where possible. Try to tip with cash so that the employee can quickly and easily access their tip.

Tipping an extra dollar or two may not seem like a big deal. But for those who rely on advice, it might make life a little easier in these volatile times.

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