When San Diego workers believe that their rights have been violated in the workplace, they may need to reach out to an attorney in order to make sure they put a stop to their employers’ illegal actions and unethical ways of conducting business. State agencies may even need to get involved in order to determine how many employees have been affected by an employer’s wrongdoings and to also determine how long the illegal actions have been going on.
After investigating workers’ complaints regarding wage and hour law violations at a warehouse in Chino, California Labor Commissioner Julie A. Su reported earlier this week that the warehouse was indeed responsible for committing numerous violations, including wage theft. As a result of the investigation, Quetico will now be held accountable for compensating warehouse workers for their overtime hours worked. Quetico must also pay fines for violating wage and hour laws. According to reports, the warehouse will be responsible for paying $1.3 million in unpaid wages and fines.
Quetico was investigated by the state’s Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. Investigators discovered that Quetico, which actually runs two warehouses in Chino, had only provided workers with three time clocks to use to punch in and out of work. Because hundreds of people worked at the warehouses, employees were forced to stand in line for long periods of time to clock in for work and to clock out for breaks. Workers often didn’t receive their full 30 minute breaks, which are mandated in most workplaces in the state. And workers were not paid for working overtime.
As if these violations are not appalling enough, Quetico is also being accused by investigators of illegally firing workers who raised complaints about their wages and breaks. Hopefully this investigation will encourage other warehouses to review their policies in order to make sure they are properly compensating their workers.
If these conditions sound all too familiar to you, you may want to consider speaking with an attorney in order to learn more about protecting your rights in the workplace.
Source: Contra Costa Times, “Chino warehouse firm faces $1.3 million in penalties for wage theft,” Andrew Edwards, Jan. 28, 2013
- Our firm handles a variety of employee rights and employment law matters, including wage theft and unpaid overtime issues. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our San Diego wage and hour matters page.