Chipotle, the Mexican fast-casual food chain, is being sued by the City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection. The lawsuit is alleging that the Chipotle employees are owned more than $150 million in fair scheduling violation relief. This is according to the lawsuit.
From the Fair Workweek Law, the violations and concern actions center around changing workers’ schedules with little to no advance notice or extra pay. In fact, it requires employees to work consecutive shifts without enough time off or extra pay. Also, not offering extra shifts before hiring more staff to fill them. This is according to the lawsuit. Moreover, the law was partially designing to prevent stores from forcing employees to work a late shift. In turn, then bring them back early the next morning, for what is known as “clopening.”
The complaint states that penalties against Chipotle could be higher. This is, in addition, to the money owed to the workers.
More Complaints Against Chipotle
In addition, the New York City complaint is also alleging that Chipotle had violating the paid sick leave law. It requires up to 56 hours of paid sick each year. In addition, the lawsuit claims that the company broke the law. They did this by denying time off requests. Moreover, they made workers find their own replacements. They did not pay employees for the time off that was taking.
6,500 Chipotle Workers
The lawsuit stated all of the roughly 6,500 Chipotle workers in NYC were, in fact, impacted by the violations, the lawsuit stated. That, on average, each worker has experienced more than three scheduling violations every week.
Between November 2017 and September 2019, the alleged violations did occur. In November 2017, the law become implementing. And in September 2019, there was an earlier lawsuit by the city against a handful of Chipotle locations was filing. Although some attempts at complying had been made, the DCWP said, unfortunately there still new and continuing violations.
Initial Charges Are Tip of the Iceberg
“Unfortunately, we have learned those initial charges were just the tip of the iceberg. That is since we first filed our case against Chipotle,” DCWP Commissioner Lorelei Salas told the Times in a statement.
Protecting Basic Workers’ Rights
Mayor Bill de Blasio, in a tweet, shared his support for the lawsuit. In fact, he said the city’s goal is to protect the basic workers’ rights.
Holding the Corporation Accountable
“Blatantly disregarding our laws is what Chipotle is doing and it’s unacceptable. Moreover, workers do deserve reliable schedules. In fact, we will do everything in our power to hold this corporation accountable,” he said in a tweet.
Laura Schalow, Chipotle’s Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, said in a statement that the city’s lawsuit was “dramatic overreach.” Moreover, the company plans to “vigorously defend itself. Chipotle does remain committed to its employees. As well as their right to a fair, just, and humane work environment that provides opportunities to all.”