FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Seattle) Amazon.com and its warehouse staffing agency have been sued today in federal court in Seattle. The case, Allison v. Amazon.com and Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc., alleges Amazon failed to pay workers for time they were required to spend in security lines waiting to undergo searches during their lunch breaks and at the end of their shifts. Workers leaving the warehouses are required to clock out before standing in line at security check points, resulting in an average approximate 25-minute wait because of the large number of employees in the huge facilities. The workers are not allowed to have personal items such as phones, personal electronic devices, or books in the facility, and have no way to use the time waiting in line for their own purposes.
Amazon warehouses, known as “fulfillment centers,” are located in fourteen states, including three in Washington, which is home to Amazon. The lawsuit is filed as a “collective” action under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act that applies to employees nationwide. The suit will also include class actions for workers in some states, such as Washington and California, where state labor laws offer greater protection to the workers than afforded under federal law.
Many warehouse employees are technically hired by the staffing agency, Integrity Staffing Solutions, Inc., which is also a defendant. In April 2013, the 9th Circuit held that a case for unpaid time brought by workers in the state of Nevada could proceed.
The nationwide lawsuit in Seattle was filed by the firms Johnson Becker of Minneapolis, Minnesota, Sommers Schwartz, P.C. of Southfield, Michigan, The Maher Law Firm of Orlando, Florida, and Schroeter, Goldmark & Bender of Seattle, Washington.
Amazon workers who may be part of the class are urged to contact one of the law firms bringing the case:
Adam J. Berger