From the New York Times: “More Workers Are Claiming Wage Theft.”
Week after week, Guadalupe Rangel worked seven days straight, sometimes 11 hours a day, unloading dining room sets, trampolines, television stands and other imports from Asia that would soon be shipped to Walmart stores.
Even though he often clocked 70 hours a week at the Schneider warehouse here, he was never paid time-and-a-half overtime, he said. And now, having joined a lawsuit involving hundreds of warehouse workers, Mr. Rangel stands to receive more than $20,000 in back pay as part of a recent $21 million legal settlement with Schneider, a national trucking company.
The lawsuit is part of a flood of recent cases — brought in California and across the nation — that accuse employers of violating minimum wage and overtime laws, erasing work hours and wrongfully taking employees’ tips. Worker advocates call these practices “wage theft,” insisting it has become far too prevalent.
Some federal and state officials agree. They assert that more companies are violating wage laws than ever before, pointing to the record number of enforcement actions they have pursued. They complain that more employers — perhaps motivated by fierce competition or a desire for higher profits — are flouting wage laws.
One of my daughters has reported similar incidents to me, and I have to admit I’ve been totally shocked by things her employer has done and the absurd requests management has made. I’ve also heard from both my employed children that mandatory breaks and mealtimes are apparently a thing of the past.
Julie Su, the state labor commissioner, recently ordered a janitorial company in Fremont to pay $332,675 in back pay and penalties to 41 workers who cleaned 17 supermarkets. She found that the company forced employees to sign blank time sheets, which it then used to record inaccurate, minimal hours of work.
Christian business owners definitely must set a better standard than what this article talks about, and the things I’ve been told (and have no reason to doubt are true).
Don’t let your worker’s cries reach Heaven because of your injustice. Love and care for your employees, as you already love and care for yourself. Treat them as you would want to be treated, if you were in their place.