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California Department of Corrections Employees Seek Compensation for Following Security Protocols

Wed 21 December 2022 News & Press

McLaughlin & Stern, LLP is representing a proposed class of non-exempt employees of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) in a lawsuit against the CDCR and the State of California for allegedly failing to pay them for all hours worked. The lawsuit claims that they, and other hourly paid, non-exempt workers, are not being compensated for time spent undergoing the facility’s security protocols before and after their scheduled shifts.

The plaintiffs claim they spend approximately 20 to 30 minutes undergoing mandated security protocols each time they enter and exit the facility; sometimes, it can be as long as 40 minutes. However, they are not paid for any of that time.

More specifically, and as further set forth in the complaint, the employees enter the prison facility through a gated sally port, where they present their identification cards and undergo bag checks to make sure that no weapons, illicit drugs, cell phones or other contraband are brought on the premises. They are then brought through a second sally port, where they have to produce their identification card again and are given specialized alarms, keys and other equipment they may need for the workday. At the end of their shift, they return the alarms, keys and equipment, have their bags checked again and show their ID cards. Despite the fact that plaintiffs and other similarly situated employees undergo these mandated security protocols for the benefit of their employer, and despite that such work is integral and indispensable to the performance of their principal work activities, the employees are not paid for this.

The complaint was filed in the Superior Court of California, County of Solano. The attorneys from McLaughlin & Stern, LLP representing the Plaintiffs are: Partners Brett Gallaway, Lee S. Shalov, Jason S. Giaimo, and Charles F. Kellett.