Seattle's minimum-wage increase sparks tipping debate

As customers start to feel the effects of Seattle's minimum wage increase, some are asking why they should leave a tip.

Some restaurants have increased prices to make up for higher wages that they'll pay their staff, and now there's a debate over whether gratuities are even needed.

A photo recently posted to the social media website Reddit ignited quite a debate about the extra money you leave with your food bill.

A card, apparently left at a bar or restaurant, reads: "Why I don't tip in Seattle," and essentially tells the server that as food costs are driven up by wage increases, the customer chooses to no longer leave a tip.

"I'm never going to discourage anybody from tipping, I think it is still to be seen whether or not the public will stop tipping as much," said Steve Habecker, who owns Norm's Eatery and Ale House in Fremont.

Some restaurants, like Ivar's, have made changes to their tipping policies. They're telling customers that they no longer need to tip their servers or bartenders, because service is now included in the pricing of the menus. Customers are still welcome to tip, the company says, but it's not as necessary as before.

Alicia Catlin is a barista who says some foodservice workers will always go above and beyond, and tipping is an incentive to do great work.

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