Protesters target The Ivy on Dawson Street again over tips row

by Dublin Gazette
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Two more protests were held outside Dawson Street eatery The Ivy in the last week, in an ongoing battle over workers’ tips.

The demonstrations, which took place last Thursday and again on Tuesday, were the latest protests held at the restaurant in a continuing controversy over the distribution and collection of tips in the popular venue.

Last November, a note from management to staff at The Ivy went viral, accusing staff of showing “bad manners” to guests by being asked to tip in cash.

The same notice also detailed that waiters would not be allowed take any payments from guests, with all payments to be taken by management.

It also referred to the staff of the Dawson Street outlet as the “headache” that the company’s directors “have to deal with”.

It is believed that the practice of asking customers to tip on card has become popular in many Dublin eateries, with a fear that employers may be taking a percentage of tips.

A group of approximately 30 activists gathered outside the popular venue on both occasions, holding signs saying, “Tip the balance”, “Stop robbing your staff,” and encouraging clients entering the restaurant to tip in cash.

Fliers were also handed out, saying: “Help tip the balance for Ivy workers. Your server may earn less than the living wage, your server often doesn’t get to take a break, your server is not paid for time spent undergoing training.

“You can tip the balance – so make sure your server receives it.

“The service charge levied on every customer simply goes into a pot to make up the difference between the minimum wage and your server’s contracted pay rate.

“You can help tip the balance by tipping in cash.”

The protests follow a demonstration held at the Dawson Street eatery last month over tips.

A video from March’s protest that circulated online showed an activist reading a “menu” of workplace issues regarding The Ivy, whilst sitting at a table in the establishment.

The activist read the list of issues aloud, saying that good service was “not rewarded” at the Ivy.

When contacted by Dublin Gazette, a representative for The Ivy said: “The Ivy Collection believe in a fair policy where tips are shared amongst the entire team, excluding management, reflecting everyone’s contribution to the service.

“An optional discretionary 12.5% service charge is added to tables and this is shared with all staff, except management.

“If guests chose to leave a cash tip, we encourage the waiter or waitress to also share this with team members, but the final decision is theirs.”

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