While anti-tip credit activists with One Fair Wage touted past wins ahead of a push to eliminate Chicago’s tip credit, other formerly affiliated groups are throwing a flag on the play.
One Fair Wage president Saru Jayaraman spoke at the progressive Netroots Nation conference where Chicago mayor Brandon Johnson brandished his support for a tip credit elimination bill pushed by One Fair Wage in his city. In her speech, she claimed One Fair Wage led Washington, D.C. to victory in eliminating its tip credit, and it would do the same in Chicago.
Yet a former One Fair Wage employee who quit his job to be the lead organizer of the Washington, D.C. campaign pushed back. In a series of tweets, organizer Ryan O’Leary slammed Jayaraman and One Fair Wage as “a sham and a fraud” for claiming they were the driving force behind Initiative 82’s passage in the District of Columbia. He claimed the organization pushed for getting the measure on the ballot in 2022, but left local organizers high and dry when it came time to campaign.
O’Leary also alleged there may be potential Federal Election Commission (FEC) concerns over the organization’s 501(c)(4) status.
This falls in line with over a decade of history of One Fair Wage and its sister organization (the Restaurant Opportunities Center) working against the best interests of its own organizers and employees, seemingly more concerned with empty PR opportunities for Jayaraman than working on behalf of what actual tipped workers want.