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Want to see how the recent Supreme Court ruling on arbitration and class action screws workers? Read this Huffington Post article on Chipotle. This lawyer Gottlieb is a real mumzer.
Roughly 10,000 people who have worked for the burrito chain joined a 2014 lawsuit alleging the company systemically forced them to work “off the clock.” They claim that Chipotle gives its restaurants so little payroll that managers require employees to clock out and continue working or perform work before they clock in. They’re suing to recoup the money they claim Chipotle owes them for the uncompensated work.This is right out of Upton Sinclair. The Epic Systems case was particularly nasty, the workers were mailed an email that said agree to the arbitration clause or you are out of a job. Low wage workers can't afford to take their employers to court, lawsuits are expensive, arbitrators are typically pro employer and the workers get screwed. Justice Gorsuch said that the result doesn't have to be apocalyptic but it sounds like it already is, at least to employees.
But Chipotle has been arguing that 2,814 workers in that group do not have a valid claim because they signed class- and collective-action waivers when they accepted their jobs. Late last year, the company provided the court with a 62-page list of workers in the lawsuit who had supposedly signed away their rights and asked the judge to exclude them from the proceedings.
“We have to protect the individual worker from being in a situation where he can’t protect his rights.”