HOUSTON - Can you imagine working for months as a janitor or a security guard and never getting paid for all your hard work?
Well, apparently that's exactly what's happened to some Houston workers employed by city contractors covering municipal facilities like the airport, court houses, and even City Hall!
"Conversations with workers led to the discovery of what appeared to be numerous wage theft violations in City of Houston's municipal buildings," Elsa Caballero, president of SEIU Texas, announced on the steps of City Hall.
Now, workers are fed up and have filed a Federal lawsuit in U.S. District Court against several contractors for failure to pay their wages and cover overtime, too!
"In a matter of months, conversations revealed more than 40 cases of alleged wage theft committed by a number of janitorial and security contractors and subcontractors," Caballero added.
"Employers have to take their legal obligations seriously, especially when it involves employees and their wages-- and how and when they're supposed to be paid," attorney Melissa Moore declared.
One janitor says she's owed more than $13,000 for back wages, and for some reason the company is refusing to pay!
"Actually, I've been working with Bush Intercontinental since 2015, December 2015, that is," Lee Poole, supervisor officer at Bush Intercontinental, said. "And since I've been there I've been noticing a lot of us have been disrespected, have been threatened."
Workers say they provided letters from the city to their employers urging them to pay up their back wages, but they've just been ignored.
"Unfortunately, these employers did not follow the law, and they continue to refuse to make good on their legal obligations to their employees," Moore insisted.
Waiting to be paid after months of hard work is more than unfair.
Meanwhile, the parties who brought this lawsuit just hope their employers will clean up their act and pay up!