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People Are Arguing Over Server’s Viral Video Showing $9.28 Pay For 70 Hours Of Work 

The way workers in the restaurant and service industry are paid in America is awful. Anyone who has paid even the slightest attention to the stories coming from servers and bartenders could tell you as much.

But even knowing what we know about how much the people who put up with endless nonsense from customers depend on tipping, sometimes it’s easy to fail to recognize just how utterly dire things really are.

A video shared by Aaliyah Cortez on TikTok recently illustrates why tipping is not only the right thing to do, but literally imperative for these hardworking employees to survive.

“So this is why you should always tip your bartenders, servers, anyone who waits on you or provides a service for you,” she says at the start of the video.

Pointing to her payslip, Cortez notes that she worked 70.80 hours over the course of the two week pay period.

Her hourly wage is $2.13 for work as both a bartender and a server, which is pure insanity in and of itself. That puts her wages for nearly 71 hours of work, only 9 hours shy of full time, at a measly $150.81.

And as if $150 for two weeks of work isn’t already abysmal, it gets even worse.

“But because I have to have social security, Medicare, and income tax taken out,” Cortez continues, “I was paid $9.28 for 70 hours of work.”

The video quickly went viral, sparking controversy between people sympathetic to restaurant workers’ plight and those who still just don’t get it.

But Cortez has a message for those trying to say she should just get another job if the pay is so low.

In a subsequent video, she calls out people shaming her for keeping her job.

“I like my job. Bartending, serving, it’s fun. However, I don’t agree with the state laws that allow restaurants to pay under minimum wage and expect the customer to pay our wages,” she says. “I don’t f—k with that.”

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Clarifying that she herself makes what she considers good money in tips, she adds: “However, this is not the case for all service industry workers. Why? Because motherfuckers ain’t tipping even though their state is expecting them to tip. So educate yourselves.”