|Deliverymen Do Not Carry Home the Bacon|
|Topic||Government and the Economy|
|Key Words||Pay, workweek, overtime, minimum wage|
The state of New York is filing suit against companies which are underpaying deliverymen who work for grocery and drug stores, carrying home the bags of affluent shoppers. The companies charge $2.25 for a delivery, paying the deliverymen $1.25. This is alleged to result in deliverymen being paid 87 cents to $1.74 an hour over workweeks that average 69 hours. When they are not making deliveries, the suit contends that the employees work in the store.
While the federal minimum wage is $5.15 an hour, state law allows some low-level jobs to be paid $4.25 an hour. However, overtime beyond 40 hours a week is payable at time and a half. The attorney general's suit calculates that this amounts to $354.88 a week for 69 hours work, while workers are earning just $60 to $120 a week. Few complain for fear that it would attract the attention of the immigration authorities.
(Updated March 1, 2000)
|Source||Richard Perez-Pena, "New York to Sue on Wages of Supermarket Deliverers," The New York Times, January 13, 2000.|
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