Labor News Around the Nation

SAN DIEGO—Now this is the type of punishment for wage theft we like to see. Former San Diego restaurant owner Zihan Zhuang was sentenced to two years in jail on Dec. 12 after being found guilty in May on three felony counts rampant wage theft from her workers, California Labor Commissioner Julie Su announced. Workers at Zhaung’s now-closed Antique Thai Cuisine eatery earned as little as $4 an hour, had to work through their breaks and meal periods and were paid only their tips – and even then Zhuang collected a portion of the tips and charged workers $5 per shift for “glass breakage” to offset her operating costs. Su called Zhaung’s actions “egregious wage theft and worker abuse” and promised further probes of other restaurants’ violations of workers’ rights and pay. The court also ordered Zhaung to repay $20,000 in wages and tips to the six workers she cheated.

Source: PAI

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OAKLAND, Calif.—Showing that, sometimes, pro-labor employers can act like, well, bosses, at the bargaining table, Office and Professional Employees Local 29 reports its members “overwhelmingly rejected” the “last, best and final” offer from a pro-union Oakland, Calif., law firm. But instead of an impasse, a federal mediator, contacted by the local, talked the law firm into resuming negotiations in January, said Local 29 Business Manager Tamara Rubyn. The local represents the 29 legal secretaries at the firm, who are now working without a contract, or even an extension of the old pact, Rubyn added.

Source: PAI