The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

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The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by chucky » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:48 pm

Disturbing if true.

The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department
Exploring the record of Donald Trump’s Labor secretary nominee.

By Kira Lerner and Alice Ollstein
Johaunna Cromer never thought she would work at a fast food restaurant. A college graduate, trained psychologist, and former member of the Air Force, she said she used to believe fast food employees were mostly teenagers trying to supplement their allowance.

But in 2014, when her family moved to Asheville, North Carolina to be close to relatives, Cromer ended up taking a position as a manager at a Hardee’s restaurant near her home. Counseling jobs were hard to find, and she needed quick money to support her two children.

The position proved far more trying than she’d ever imagined.
“I learned how hard the work was,” she told ThinkProgress. “And I never thought they would treat people the way they treat people for fighting for what’s right.”

Almost immediately after starting the job, Cromer realized that her $7.25 an hour salary was not sufficient to pay her bills and support her children. She became active in the Fight for 15 movement — a national network of fast-food and other low-wage workers demanding a $15 an hour minimum wage and the right to form a union. She traveled across the country to participate in strikes and protests, gave televised interviews, and encouraged her coworkers to join the movement.
Eight months later, she was fired.

“I was making too much noise, and they were probably afraid of me putting Hardee’s name in a bad light,” she said, alleging that Hardee’s management pressured her coworkers into signing false statements about her workplace conduct.
Cromer says her termination is the product of an anti-union, anti-worker culture at CKE Restaurants, which operates Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. and whose CEO Andy Puzder was recently nominated by President-elect Donald Trump to lead the U.S. Department of Labor.

Puzder has made his career on the backs of low-paid fast food workers like Cromer, and he has spent the last 16 years overseeing a fast food chain notorious for violating basic wage and hour laws. A review of federal and state court documents and Labor Department inspections paint a picture of a corporate culture that values profit over worker welfare.
People employed by Puzder have sued for discrimination, filed class action lawsuits over the denial of overtime pay, and alleged that they were fired for protesting the chain’s low wages.

Labor law experts have also spoken out against Puzder’s practices. Paul Secunda, director of the Labor and Employment Law Program at Marquette University, told ThinkProgress that Puzder has taken advantage of the fact that fast food workers are a vulnerable population that is easy to abuse.

“They are usually at the bottom of the pay scale, they usually don’t have the sophistication to know their rights under the law, and it’s hard for them to be collective in their approach because they’re moving around so much,” he said. “It’s really easy to manipulate them and exploit them, and that’s what we’ve seen.”

“It would be hard to pick someone who is more anti-labor than this guy for the Labor Department,” he added. And those with first-hand experience with his policies, like Cromer, believe he will lead the country’s workers in a terrifying direction.
“If he can’t even care for his own company, what makes you think he can care for anything else?” Cromer asked.

A thickburger of legal complaints

Cromer said she has filed legal action against the company for her termination, and the litigation remains pending. Many other workers and ex-workers have sued Puzder’s restaurants as well.

In 2009, in response to litigation, CKE Restaurants agreed to treat general managers like hourly, non-exempt employees, entitling them to overtime pay. But the restaurant chain refused to offer back pay to the thousands of workers who had been illegally denied overtime, prompting another class action lawsuit.

“Imagine if you worked for me for ten years and we said, ‘Oh we’ve gotten it wrong. It turns out you were entitled to overtime,’” said Andy Graves, a California attorney who’s representing the managers in two ongoing class actions. “And you said, ‘What about the last ten years?’ And I said, ‘Nah, we’re just changing it going forward.’”

Jose Cubias, who sued the company in 2010, worked at Carl’s Jr. branches around Los Angeles for nearly 30 years, including five years as a general manager. He says he and every other general manager in the state were denied back pay for hundreds of hours of overtime they worked between 2005 and 2009. The company also forced them to say they were on vacation on days they were actually working in order to meet the company’s labor budget, and made them work up to 12-hour shifts without legally-required meal and rest breaks.

“By deliberately failing to pay its employees wages to which they are entitled, CKE avoided substantial expenses and thereby enriched itself at the expense of its employees,” said Cubias’ lawsuit, filed in California state court.


Even after the CKE-owned restaurants changed their policies and agreed to pay managers overtime, they continued to force them to perform unpaid, off-the-clock work outside the restaurant, like reporting to their superiors, tracking down missing employees, and making calls about equipment. Without litigation, Graves explained, many managers had no way to stand up for their rights under California labor law.

“These are people who have eighth-grade educations, they came to the U.S. as teenagers, they’ve done nothing but work for this fast food company for 30 years and the company kind of has them now,” he said. “They can’t do anything else.



read the rest.

https://thinkprogress.org/puzder-labor- ... .wy1hubk75
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by evilconempire » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:53 pm

Hangy? ;)2
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by psk836 » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:54 pm

The real minimum wage is always $0.

It doesn't really matter whether the wage is enough to accomplish everything you need to accomplish. The wage is supposed to represent what the market will bear for the job at hand. If the wage is too low employers will not be able to get qualified people to perform the job. If an applicant accepts the wage offer, then I don't understand the argument that the wage isn't "fair". If this is the case then you should not agree to it, and if your opinion about fairness changes once you are performing the job, you are free to find another one if the wage is no longer acceptable.
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by chucky » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:55 pm

evilconempire wrote:Hangy? ;)2
No , but I don't think hardworking people should be abused or underpaid. The national minimum wage should be $10 an hour .
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by chucky » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:57 pm

psk836 wrote:The real minimum wage is always $0.

It doesn't really matter whether the wage is enough to accomplish everything you need to accomplish. The wage is supposed to represent what the market will bear for the job at hand. If the wage is too low employers will not be able to get qualified people to perform the job. If an applicant accepts the wage offer, then I don't understand the argument that the wage isn't "fair". If this is the case then you should not agree to it, and if your opinion about fairness changes once you are performing the job, you are free to find another one if the wage is no longer acceptable.
It isn't a fair wage because American citizens have to compete with millions of illegals for minimum wage jobs.
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by barrysoetoro » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:57 pm

chucky wrote:
evilconempire wrote:Hangy? ;)2
No , but I don't think hardworking people should be abused or underpaid. The national minimum wage should be $10 an hour .

No, there shouldn't be one at all.
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by barrysoetoro » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:58 pm

chucky wrote:Disturbing if true.

The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department
Exploring the record of Donald Trump’s Labor secretary nominee.

By Kira Lerner and Alice Ollstein
Johaunna Cromer never thought she would work at a fast food restaurant. A college graduate, trained psychologist, and former member of the Air Force, she said she used to believe fast food employees were mostly teenagers trying to supplement their allowance.

But in 2014, when her family moved to Asheville, North Carolina to be close to relatives, Cromer ended up taking a position as a manager at a Hardee’s restaurant near her home. Counseling jobs were hard to find, and she needed quick money to support her two children.

The position proved far more trying than she’d ever imagined.
“I learned how hard the work was,” she told ThinkProgress. “And I never thought they would treat people the way they treat people for fighting for what’s right.”

Almost immediately after starting the job, Cromer realized that her $7.25 an hour salary was not sufficient to pay her bills and support her children. She became active in the Fight for 15 movement — a national network of fast-food and other low-wage workers demanding a $15 an hour minimum wage and the right to form a union. She traveled across the country to participate in strikes and protests, gave televised interviews, and encouraged her coworkers to join the movement.
Eight months later, she was fired.

“I was making too much noise, and they were probably afraid of me putting Hardee’s name in a bad light,” she said, alleging that Hardee’s management pressured her coworkers into signing false statements about her workplace conduct.
Cromer says her termination is the product of an anti-union, anti-worker culture at CKE Restaurants, which operates Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. and whose CEO Andy Puzder was recently nominated by President-elect Donald Trump to lead the U.S. Department of Labor.

Puzder has made his career on the backs of low-paid fast food workers like Cromer, and he has spent the last 16 years overseeing a fast food chain notorious for violating basic wage and hour laws. A review of federal and state court documents and Labor Department inspections paint a picture of a corporate culture that values profit over worker welfare.
People employed by Puzder have sued for discrimination, filed class action lawsuits over the denial of overtime pay, and alleged that they were fired for protesting the chain’s low wages.

Labor law experts have also spoken out against Puzder’s practices. Paul Secunda, director of the Labor and Employment Law Program at Marquette University, told ThinkProgress that Puzder has taken advantage of the fact that fast food workers are a vulnerable population that is easy to abuse.

“They are usually at the bottom of the pay scale, they usually don’t have the sophistication to know their rights under the law, and it’s hard for them to be collective in their approach because they’re moving around so much,” he said. “It’s really easy to manipulate them and exploit them, and that’s what we’ve seen.”

“It would be hard to pick someone who is more anti-labor than this guy for the Labor Department,” he added. And those with first-hand experience with his policies, like Cromer, believe he will lead the country’s workers in a terrifying direction.
“If he can’t even care for his own company, what makes you think he can care for anything else?” Cromer asked.

A thickburger of legal complaints

Cromer said she has filed legal action against the company for her termination, and the litigation remains pending. Many other workers and ex-workers have sued Puzder’s restaurants as well.

In 2009, in response to litigation, CKE Restaurants agreed to treat general managers like hourly, non-exempt employees, entitling them to overtime pay. But the restaurant chain refused to offer back pay to the thousands of workers who had been illegally denied overtime, prompting another class action lawsuit.

“Imagine if you worked for me for ten years and we said, ‘Oh we’ve gotten it wrong. It turns out you were entitled to overtime,’” said Andy Graves, a California attorney who’s representing the managers in two ongoing class actions. “And you said, ‘What about the last ten years?’ And I said, ‘Nah, we’re just changing it going forward.’”

Jose Cubias, who sued the company in 2010, worked at Carl’s Jr. branches around Los Angeles for nearly 30 years, including five years as a general manager. He says he and every other general manager in the state were denied back pay for hundreds of hours of overtime they worked between 2005 and 2009. The company also forced them to say they were on vacation on days they were actually working in order to meet the company’s labor budget, and made them work up to 12-hour shifts without legally-required meal and rest breaks.

“By deliberately failing to pay its employees wages to which they are entitled, CKE avoided substantial expenses and thereby enriched itself at the expense of its employees,” said Cubias’ lawsuit, filed in California state court.


Even after the CKE-owned restaurants changed their policies and agreed to pay managers overtime, they continued to force them to perform unpaid, off-the-clock work outside the restaurant, like reporting to their superiors, tracking down missing employees, and making calls about equipment. Without litigation, Graves explained, many managers had no way to stand up for their rights under California labor law.

“These are people who have eighth-grade educations, they came to the U.S. as teenagers, they’ve done nothing but work for this fast food company for 30 years and the company kind of has them now,” he said. “They can’t do anything else.



read the rest.

https://thinkprogress.org/puzder-labor- ... .wy1hubk75


Oh, no!!!!

but but but but what does that mean?!?

Will he cut pay to DOL employees? :rolling:
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by evilconempire » Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:01 pm

chucky wrote:
evilconempire wrote:Hangy? ;)2
No , but I don't think hardworking people should be abused or underpaid. The national minimum wage should be $10 an hour .
I was kidding because of the source.

We need to have different minimum wages depending on stage of life and local COL. $10 would phase out teens looking to enter the labor force and possibly seniors looking to supplement their retirement. Less than 2% of workforce makes minimum wage and it's almost never for more than a year. I don't see this as being the problem some others see it as.
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by barrysoetoro » Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:04 pm

evilconempire wrote:
chucky wrote:
evilconempire wrote:Hangy? ;)2
No , but I don't think hardworking people should be abused or underpaid. The national minimum wage should be $10 an hour .
I was kidding because of the source.

We need to have different minimum wages depending on stage of life and local COL. $10 would phase out teens looking to enter the labor force and possibly seniors looking to supplement their retirement. Less than 2% of workforce makes minimum wage and it's almost never for more than a year. I don't see this as being the problem some others see it as.

Why would you want something that has NEVER worked????

It didn't work, lets try it again. It didn't work, lets try it again. It didn't work, lets try it again. Vote democrat...

Want a raise?!? Quit flipping burgers!!!!
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Re: The CEO of a chain that underpays and mistreats workers is about to lead the Labor Department

Post by psk836 » Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:05 pm

chucky wrote:
evilconempire wrote:Hangy? ;)2
No , but I don't think hardworking people should be abused or underpaid. The national minimum wage should be $10 an hour .
Minimum wage laws are designed to push more unskilled laborers onto the welfare rolls and make them compliant government dependents. What always happens when we artificially manipulate the minimum wage is that many of the people who are dependent on those jobs lose them and lose access to them. And once you fluff the minimum wage to $10 per hour, what are you supposed to to with the group that was already making a little more than the minimum wage? Shouldn't there still be a wage gap to compensate them for their experience/skills? And then what about the group above them?

When you manipulate the minimum wage you're really influencing more than that, including costing many people who want to work the opportunity to do so.

The market may not be as compassionate as we all would like, but at least it is rational.
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