• Restaurant owners form lobby group to fight for minimum wage increases

A week after the National Restaurant Association announced that it would use lobbyists to represent some of the country’s largest chain restaurant corporations to argue against raising the minimum wage, another group of restaurant owners is lobbying for the opposite.

The Restaurant Opportunities Centers United recently created the National Restaurant Industry Roundtable, an organization that its members describe as an alternative restaurant association of nearly 100 business owners across the country, who will fight for the "real needs of business owners and employers — and the workers they employ — instead of big corporate interests and lobbyists."

ROC United co-director Saru Jayaraman and several member employers will meet today at 12:30 p.m. in Washington D.C with Rep. George Miller (D-CA), sponsor of the Fair Minimum Wage Act, and WAGES Act sponsor Rep. Donna F. Edwards (D-MD), to discuss the need to increase the minimum wage for all restaurant employees, including those who work for tips, and to raise standards in the restaurant industry by supporting sustainable and fair practices.

Members of the new roundtable meeting in D.C. today include: Andy Shallal, owner of Busboys & Poets and Eatonville Restaurants in Washington, D.C.; Teresa Ging, owner of Sugar Bliss Cake Boutique in Chicago and Natan Zion, owner of The Gorbals Restaurant, Los Angeles.

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