To everyone who participated in honoring the tradition of setting up MIA/POW tables this weekend, we thank you. Here is a glimpse at how the display at Seibel's Restaurant and UpTown Pub made an effect.
This Memorial Day weekend, restaurants across the state of Maryland will have “Missing Man” tables set in their dining rooms to honor the American soldiers who have lost their lives or are still missing in action while serving their country. These tables are also referred to as a MIA/POW table, Empty table or Fallen Comrade table.
The Missing Man table is a permanent place of honor found in military dining facilities that are also set up during service balls and other military dining occasions. The tradition of setting a separate table in honor of fallen and missing soldiers has been in place since the end of the Vietnam War. The manner in which the table is decorated is full of special symbols to help us remember the sacrifice these men, women and their families have given to their country.
As families and friends get together this holiday weekend, restaurants across the state will have Missing Man tables set up to remind their customers of those we have lost. The Restaurant Association of Maryland led the effort to educate restaurants on the meaning of the Missing Man table and encouraged their members to participate.
Marshall Weston, President & CEO of the Restaurant Association of Maryland, commented that “Restaurants are the cornerstones of their communities. They often donate to numerous charitable causes and most offer discounts to military and other service members to thank them for what they do to protect us. The Missing Man table is just another way for restaurants to recognize and honor them, while also reminding customers of their sacrifice”.
Click the READ MORE button to see how the Missing Man Table is set up and a list of restaurants participating.
The Restaurant Association of Maryland is excited to announce the winners of the 65th Annual Stars of the Restaurant Industry Awards. The Gala celebration and awards presentation took place Sunday, May 5th at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel. Over thirty thousand people voted for their favorite Maryland restaurants and industry professionals.
“The Gala is our opportunity to honor and give recognition to elite restaurants across the state. We are fortunate to have such a diverse group of restaurants to choose from who are dedicated to their customers, their community and their employees,” said Marshall Weston, President and CEO of the Restaurant Association of Maryland.
2019 Award Winners and Honorees
RAM Cornerstone of the Industry Award
Awarded to the companies that best illustrate how restaurants are the cornerstone of the economy and their community. These successful businesses support local communities by creating jobs and financially supporting non-profit groups, schools, scouts and youth sports teams.
Carrol's Creek Cafe - Annapolis
Glory Days Grill - Statewide
The Greene Turtle Sports Bar & Grille - Statewide
Miss Shirley's Cafe - Baltimore & Annapolis
Salerno's Restaurant & Catering - Eldersburg
Tino's Italian Bistro - Columbia
Maryland Hospitality Hall of Honor 2019 Inductees
Celebrating its 19th anniversary, the Maryland Hospitality Hall of Honor was created to recognize those restaurants in Maryland that embody the spirit of the hospitality industry based on their longevity and overall contributions to their customers. Awardees have all been in business for at least 20 years.
The Crackpot Seafood Restaurant - Towson
Jasper’s Restaurant - Largo
Johanssons Dining House - Westminster
Mountain Gate Family Restaurant - Thurmont
The Olde Philadelphia Inn - Rosedale
Old Stein Inn - Edgewater
Tastee Diner - Bethesda
The Restaurant Association of Maryland responds to Progressive Maryland’s commentary attacking its polling and credibility.
In an op-ed published by MarylandReporter.com, Larry Stafford, executive director of Progressive Maryland, accuses my organization of asking “fake questions” in the recent Gonzales Poll about a minimum wage increase, and asserts that we employ “deceptive practices” that “should cause policymakers to question” our motives and facts.
Mr. Stafford and I can disagree on the minimum wage issue all day long. I’m comfortable with that. But when he implies that the Restaurant Association of Maryland (RAM) is deceptive with regard to the arguments we make to policymakers, I have to draw the line. His attack is baseless, unwarranted and shows he has little understanding of business economics.
The reason the restaurant industry is so concerned about this issue, and was a big part of opposition at the public hearings, is because mandates that increase the cost of labor affect our industry disproportionately.
As we shared with legislators, our industry requires four times more labor per $1 million in sales than the average of most other Maryland industry sectors (per U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data).
Our fears about the REAL consequences of substantial minimum wage hikes are validated by the countless news stories reporting the impact on restaurant businesses and the people we employ.
The Gonzales Poll is well-respected, and provided an opportunity to get answers to REAL questions about REAL consequences that affect REAL people. [Here is Maryland Reporter’s story, including the full results of the poll.]
Real questions and real consequences on real people
While 43% of Gonzales Poll respondents “strongly favor” a law requiring employers to pay a $15 minimum wage, just 28% “strongly favor” it if it resulted in significantly higher prices for things like eating out, retail goods and services.
Only 12% of Gonzales Poll respondents “strongly favor” a $15 minimum wage if it resulted in a loss of jobs for low-skill workers, while 70% would “oppose” it if low-skilled jobs were lost (55% “strongly oppose” and 15% “somewhat oppose”), according to the poll.
But let’s face it, what likely surprised Mr. Stafford most is the fact that, of the 79% of Maryland Democrats who favor the idea of a law requiring Maryland employers to pay a $15 minimum wage, support among Democrats plunges to just 23% when asked about a $15 minimum wage if a consequence was a loss of jobs for low-skill workers, such as those in the fast-food industry.
Mr. Stafford conveniently dismisses these particular poll questions because they cause people to really think.
According to a Jan. 29 article from the New York Post, “NYC’s minimum wage increase will give you takeout sticker shock.” This story (like others) validates our poll question about price increases as a result of substantial minimum wage hikes.
According to a Jan. 16 article from U.S. News & World Report, “New York Restaurants Struggle to Adapt to Higher Wages.” This story (like others) validates our poll question about job losses as a result of substantial minimum wage hikes.
According to a March 6 article from The Guardian, “Whole Foods cuts workers’ hours after Amazon introduces minimum wage.” This story validates our testimony about businesses reducing work hours to help offset higher minimum wage costs.
There are many more news stories out there about the ramifications of artificially high minimum wages that Mr. Stafford would like to ignore. For more news stories, facts and testimonials about the REAL consequences of substantial minimum wage hikes in jurisdictions nationwide, please see www.FacesOf15.com.
For the record
Regarding the tip credit, we support preserving Maryland’s current tip wage because tipped employees are guaranteed by law to make at least the full applicable minimum wage. Tipped employees from casual restaurants also testified in support of preserving Maryland’s current tip credit at the public hearings.
We also support more transparency about the REAL hourly pay rate of tipped employees. This is why we requested an amendment in the Senate (which the Finance Committee passed by unanimous voice vote) to require restaurant employers to show the effective hourly pay rate on tipped employee pay stubs. This will allow tipped employees to easily confirm that they are earning at least minimum wage per hour, and makes it clear when employers are required by law to make up any shortfalls.
And for the record, the majority of our members are independently-owned restaurants, not “industry giants” as Mr. Stafford incorrectly asserted. This fact was reflected by the many local restaurant witnesses who testified at the public hearings.
Local businesses are concerned about the impact such a substantial minimum wage increase will have on their businesses and the people they employ.
Perhaps Mr. Stafford should do his homework before publicly accusing my organization of asking “fake questions,” alleging that there is “nothing to support RAM’s claims” about job loss, and suggesting that we are “misstating the facts of raising the minimum wage.”
This is important because, as he said, legislators should know the facts.
Melvin R. Thompson is the Senior Vice President of the Restaurant Association of Maryland
Tom Marsh, owner of the Chat-n-Chew Restaurant in McCoole, Maryland submitted the following letter to the Baltimore Sun:
I am now aware that the Maryland House of Delegates last week passed an increase in the state’s minimum wage (House Bill 166). What a terrible piece of legislation and how discriminatory and unfair to the thousands of hardworking business owners who will most likely be run totally out of business by the dictatorial and mandated wages that they simply cannot afford to pay.
Read the entire letter here:
From The Guardian:
In response to public pressure and increasing scrutiny over the pay of its warehouse workers, Amazon enacted a $15 minimum wage for all its employees on 1 November, including workers at grocery chain Whole Foods, which it purchased in 2017.
All Whole Foods employees paid less than $15 an hour saw their wages increase to at least that, while all other team members received a $1 an hour wage increase and team leaders received a $2 an hour increase.
But since the wage increase, Whole Food employees have told the Guardian that they have experienced widespread cuts that have reduced schedule shifts across many stores, often negating wage gains for employees.
Read the entire article here:
Op-Ed in the Baltimore Sun by Thomas A. Firey - a Maryland Public Policy Institute senior fellow and a senior fellow with the Cato Institute.
The same poll last week that found 60% of Maryland voters support making the minimum wage $15 — with 43% strongly supporting the idea — also found that support for the move passed by the House of Delegates Friday dropped sharply when voters were told it would raise prices and cost jobs.
The Restaurant Association of Maryland added those questions to the poll by Gonzales Research & Media Services.
“The abstract concept of a legislated mandatory $15 minimum wage for all workers in Maryland has, at first blush, resonance for many voters in the state,” Gonzales wrote. “However, when presented with concrete possible outcomes of a mandated minimum wage, voter attitudes shift markedly.”
Read the entire article here: https://marylandreporter.com/2019/03/06/poll-finds-support-for-15-minimum-declines-if-voters-told-of-higher-prices-lost-jobs/
Gonzales Poll reveals that just 23 percent of registered Democrats surveyed statewide support the $15 minimum wage bill
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