Restaurants introduce new tipping initiative to support kitchen staff

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Most restaurants give you the option to tip the server, but what about the kitchen staff? Thanks to a new initiative, customers at 5Church and La Belle Helene in Charlotte can now do that.

Patrick Whalen is chief executive officer of the 5th Street Group, which owns and operates the restaurants. He said the group decided to offer the “Tip the Kitchen” option to guests for several reasons, but mostly to better support workers who were making significantly less than servers, which was causing high turnover and creating a toxic work environment.

>> In the video at the top of this page, Channel 9′s Gina Esposito talks to Whalen and 5Church’s chef Aaron Dearing to find out how the program is already making a difference in the lives of those behind the scenes.

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