News Brief

US Department of Labor recovers $89K in back wages, damages from Washington onion processing facility that denied overtime to 49 employees

Weston Mountain Onions LLC

2926 Kingsgate Way
Richland, WA 99354

Investigation findings: U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found Weston Mountain Onions, a Richland onion processing facility, denied employees the required overtime pay for hours over 40 in a workweek, a Fair Labor Standards Act violation. The underpaid employees unloaded, sorted, cleaned and cut whole onions, including onions from other growers, using mechanized and manual processes, then packed them for shipment.

Back Wages Recovered:               
$44,736 in back wages for 49 employees
$44,736 in liquidated damages for 49 employees

Quote: “Workers have the right to be paid correctly for all the hours that they perform,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Thomas Silva in Seattle. “We are committed to helping employers understand their obligations and responsibilities under federal labor law and urge them to take advantage of our services.”

Background: The Wage and Hour Division credits collaboration with the Fair Work Center in Yakima for helping complete the investigation successfully. The center is driven by workers from low-wage industries across Washington who use education, relational organizing, and enforcement to raise wages and improve labor standards.

Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the division. Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions – regardless of their immigration status – and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages.

Help ensure hours worked and pay are accurate by downloading the department’s Android and iOS Timesheet App for free, also available in Spanish.

Wage and Hour Division
June 21, 2023
Release Number
Media Contact: Michael Petersen
Media Contact: Jose Carnevali
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