The Chicago Transit Authority has been hit with a proposed class action filed by seven plaintiffs who claim they were underpaid for overtime hours worked during evening and night shifts.
The plaintiffs look to represent members of the 11 labor unions that comprise the Chicago Transit Authority Trades Coalition, which bargains with the defendant to set the wages, hours and working conditions for union members, the suit says.
According to the case, the collective bargaining agreement negotiated by the Coalition and the Chicago Transit Authority provides shift differential pay for transit employees who work during evening and night shifts. An employee whose shift starts between 3:30 PM and 11:30 PM is to receive a 10-percent shift differential for work performed during that window, while an employee whose shift starts between 11:30 PM and 7:00 AM is to receive a 15-percent shift differential for those hours, the case says.
The lawsuit alleges Chicago Transit Authority has failed to include shift differential pay as part of employees’ regular rates of pay for the purpose of calculating time-and-a-half overtime wages. Per the complaint, shift differential pay constitutes “remuneration for employment paid to, or on behalf of, the employee” and should therefore be included as part of workers’ regular pay rate as defined by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
The plaintiffs say they worked during the evening and night shifts “at all relevant times” and are thus owed proper time-and-a-half overtime wages for weeks during which they worked more than 40 hours.
The defendant’s conduct, according to the case, was performed “knowingly and intentionally” or “with reckless disregard” for the entity’s obligations under the FLSA.
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