Employees of a slaughterhouse in Kansas have filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Kansas against National Beef Packing Co. that seeks unpaid overtime and hourly wages.
According to the lawsuit, National Beef pays “gang-time” which pays for only time that the production line runs. Plaintiffs say that the company fails to pay employees for the time it takes to put on and take off protective gear during their unpaid meal breaks, nor does it pay for time spent walking to and from production lines, time spent wait on the line for production equipment, cleaning the equipment, and waiting on the line when it is not running.
The attorney for the plaintiffs said, “violations of the law in this industry are pervasive”, while the spokesperson for the American Meat Institute, an industry trade group, said “I don’t think it’s quite the way the attorney wants to characterize,”
The lawsuit seeks class action status on behalf of the nearly 2,000 employees at the National Beef Liberal plant, and seeks unspecified damages for unpaid wages as well as attorney fees and court costs, the Wichita Eagle reports.