A growing number of lawsuits have been filed over “wage theft”, where employers allegedly violate minimum wage and overtime laws, falsely claim a lower number of work hours and take employees’ tips. Worker advocates, along with some state and federal officials, say that this wrongful practice has become far too common.
The New York Times shares the story of Guadalupe Rangel, who workers seven days straight, sometimes 11 hours a day for Schneider warehouse. He often worked 70 hours per week unloading furniture and other imports from Asia to be shipped to Walmart stores, but he says he was never paid for the time-and-a-half overtime. Rangel joined a lawsuit along with hundreds of other warehouse workers. The suit was recently settled for $21 million, resulting in over $20,000 in back pay for Rangel. “Sometimes I’d work 60, even 90 days in a row,” said Mr. Rangel to the New York Times. “They never paid overtime.”