Zingerman's Deli in Ann Arbor, Mich., pays his 630 employees up to $21 an hour, offers health and dental benefits to all workers, provides paid time off and 401(k) retirement plans.
He's not the only decent restaurant owner in America. The Restaurant Opportunities Center United recently published a guide to restaurateurs like Paul Saginaw who pay their workers a living wage and lets them stay home when they're sick. You can find the guide, which lists about 100 high-road employers, here. (There's an app for iPhone and Androids as well.)
You won't be surprised to find the big chains like Denny's and McDonald's receive low marks. The restaurant industry, dominated by large chains, by and large pays poverty wages to its workers, provides few if any benefits and doesn't offer paid work days.
The Restaurant Opportunities Center, by the way, started in New York City after 9/11 to help restaurant workers who lost jobs because of the attacks. Now it runs a worker center in New York City and campaigns for higher wages and paid sick leave.
Find out more about tipped restaurant workers here: