Fast food CEO Andy Puzder has hit yet another delay in his confirmation as Donald Trump’s labor secretary. His confirmation hearing has just been pushed back to February 7, the third time it’s been postponed.
Puzder, who hasn’t yet turned in his ethics paperwork, was also hit Thursday with 33 complaints against his company for wage theft, sexual harassment, and unfair labor practices.
“Several months ago my shift-manager asked me for a kiss, and when I said no he told me that unless I started giving him what he wanted, he was going to start taking it,” said Ceatana Cardona, one of the Hardee’s workers involved in the complaints from Tampa, FL, in a statement. But she said the company did nothing when she complained. Another homosexual male Carl’s Jr. worker in Oakland, CA, described being harassed by his manager, who told his coworkers and customers that he “likes boys” and used a feminized version of his name.
Workers also described being denied their full pay. “Recently the restaurant I worked at went an entire month without paying me a dime, and they only agreed to pay me after I stopped coming to work in protest,” said Angel Gallegos, a Carl’s Jr. employee in Los Angeles, CA, in a statement. “If Andy Puzder can’t be trusted to pay his workers what they’ve earned, why should we expect him to enforce laws meant to protect working Americans?” Another from Whittier, CA claims to have gone a month without a paycheck, while workers in Durham, NC say that because they were paid with debit cards that included transaction fees, their hourly pay ended up falling below the $7.25 minimum wage.
Fight for $15 also held protests across the country to draw attention to the workers’ complaints.
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