News Release

Subway Franchisee Pays Back Wages After Denying Paid Sick Leave To Worker with Children at Home When School Closed During Coronavirus

IRVINE, CA – A resolution by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) has led a Subway franchisee in Irvine, California, to pay $595 in back wages to an employee who missed work to remain home to care for her children due to the lack of childcare during the coronavirus.

Managers at Rollino Group, Inc., owner and operator of the Subway on Culver Drive in Irvine said they were unfamiliar with the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). When informed, they agreed to fully comply and pay the two weeks of leave and 10 weeks of future leave to the employee, a single mother of two working the graveyard shift. 

“We appreciate the franchisee and its risk management consultant working with us to repay the worker once they learned of their obligations under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act,” said Wage and Hour District Director Rodolfo Cortez in San Diego, California. “We encourage employers and employees to call us for assistance and review our online tools to improve their understanding of the requirements under this new law.

The FFCRA helps the U.S. combat and defeat the workplace effects of the coronavirus by giving tax credits to American businesses with fewer than 500 employees either to provide employees with paid leave for the employee’s own health needs or to care for family members. Please visit WHD’s “Quick Benefits Tips” for information about how much leave workers may qualify to use, and the wages employers must pay. The law enables employers to keep their workers on their payrolls, while at the same time ensuring that workers are not forced to choose between their paychecks and the public health measures needed to combat the virus.

WHD continues to provide updated information on its website and through extensive outreach efforts to ensure that workers and employers have the information they need about the benefits and protections of this new law. The agency also provides additional information on common issues employers and employees face when responding to the coronavirus and its effects on wages and hours worked under the Fair Labor Standards Act and on job-protected leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act at https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic

For more information about the laws enforced by WHD, call 866-4US-WAGE, or visit www.dol.gov/agencies/whd

For further information about the coronavirus, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

WHD’s mission is to promote and achieve compliance with labor standards to protect and enhance the welfare of the nation’s workforce. WHD enforces federal minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping and child labor requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act. WHD also enforces the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, the Employee Polygraph Protection Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, wage garnishment provisions of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, and a number of employment standards and worker protections as provided in several immigration related statutes. Additionally, WHD administers and enforces the prevailing wage requirements of the Davis Bacon Act and the Service Contract Act and other statutes applicable to federal contracts for construction and for the provision of goods and services.

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

Agency
Wage and Hour Division
Date
June 25, 2020
Release Number
20-1124-SAN
Contact: Leo Kay
Phone Number
Contact: Jose Carnevali
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