Fair Work News — May 2021

a restaurant where workers’ rights weren’t on the menu

A Spanish-speaking immigrant restaurant worker in Seattle recently contacted our legal clinic looking for help enforcing his rights on the job. He was regularly required to work overtime hours, but his employer only paid him for 40 hours each week, no matter how many hours he actually worked.

He’d also taken Paid Sick & Safe Time after coming down with an illness — but instead of wishing him a speedy recovery, his employer fired him for staying home.

Represented by Fair Work Center lawyers, he filed a wage theft and retaliation lawsuit against his employer to enforce his right to get paid and take time off when sick.

a big corporation with a big sick leave problem

A warehouse worker at a large corporation reached out to us because they were concerned that their company’s sick time policy violated the state’s emergency COVID-19 rules.

Managers had told them that anyone who got sick needed to come into the workplace in-person to get approved for using sick time. When the worker mentioned how unsafe that policy was — especially during a pandemic —supervisors threatened to write them up.

We supported this worker in filing complaints with the WA Division of Occupational Safety & Health and with the Attorney General’s office to get the company to end this hazardous policy.

and a self-help success story

A Spanish-speaking immigrant worker at a restaurant in South King County got in touch with us after his employer shorted him $1,600 on a recent paycheck. He knew he was being cheated, but wanted to better understand his rights before confronting his employer about the missing money.

Our legal team helped him understand his rights and his options for recovering his missing pay. With that information, this worker negotiated with his employer on his own and recovered the entire amount he was owed.

Are your rights at work being violated?

If you’re interested in a training, one on one information session, or a free consultation with our lawyers, call 844-485-1195, email help@fairworkcenter.org, or fill out this form.

Questions about your rights at work? Join us for our Weekly Workers’ Workshop

Join us on Zoom and Facebook Live for our Weekly Workers’ Workshop, every Tuesday at 5pm (in English) and 5:30pm (en español). It’s a space to share your experiences, ask questions, and learn more about your rights and how to enforce them.

Our community educators — including Colleen and Ricardo — can’t wait to meet you and start tackling the issues you’re facing on the job: click below to check out their video invitations!