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Poll: NYC voters want to keep restaurant tipping, increase pay

Fast food workers converge in downtown Manhattan on

Fast food workers converge in downtown Manhattan on July 22, 2015, ahead of New York State wage board's public meeting to call for a $15 industry-wide minimum wage. Photo Credit: Yeong-Ung Yang

New York City voters aren't keen on eliminating the tradition of tipping servers and they support increasing the minimum wage for fast-food workers.

So says the latest Quinnipiac University poll released Monday.

Getting rid of restaurant tipping and charging higher menu prices to compensate employees is a "bad idea," voters said. Overall, it's 55 percent against eliminating tipping and raising menu prices to 36 percent in favor.

Overall, no specific party, gender, borough or age group supports the idea, the poll said. The lowest opposition is from Manhattan voters: 48 percent say no to eliminating tipping to 41 percent for.

Also, Manhattan voters are unwilling to pay more for a meal and tip less by 49 percent to 45 percent, the poll said.

New York City voters favor raising the minimum wage for fast food workers to $15 per hour over the next three years, 70 percent to 27 percent.

Every group supports the increase except Republicans; that voting base is opposed 60 percent to 39 percent, the poll said.

A $15 minimum wage will not result in restaurant closings and loss of jobs, voters say, 56 percent to 36 percent. And voters say 57 percent to 33 percent that they would be willing to pay more for fast food so workers could get higher wages.

Again, only one group -- Republicans -- is unwilling to pay more for the burger, chicken and fries, 55 percent to 35 percent.

"Here's a tip for restaurateurs: Keep the tip" and don't charge higher menu prices to compensate the servers, said Quinnipiac University Poll assistant director Maurice Carroll. "Most New Yorkers like this dining tradition just the way it is."

TV in cabs

The matter of televisions in the back of cabs is divided by boroughs, the poll said.

Overall, New York City voters say 45 percent to 40 percent to keep the TVs in the back of taxicabs. But Manhattan voters say the TVs should be removed, 49 percent to 36 percent.

In other boroughs, support for taxi TVs is 42 percent to 41 percent in Brooklyn and 53 percent to 32 percent in Queens.

Supporters, especially those in the 18 to 34 age group, say they are a "pleasant diversion."

In Uber things

In the matter of using Uber, just 21 percent of those polled have used the app-based car service. But it does have a favorable rating, 43 percent to 16 percent.

The poll was conducted from Oct. 22 to Wednesday. Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,155 New York City voters, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points.

For each question, there were a number of those surveyed who said they did not know or that the issue did not apply to them.

More information on the poll is at

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