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AFGE Calls for Federal Workers to Join Back-Pay Lawsuit

February 4, 2019

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

WASHINGTON—The five-week shutdown of several federal agencies ended at least temporarily Jan. 25, president of AFGEebut the American Federation of Government Employees union is urging the 450,000 federal employees who had to work without pay to join its lawsuit to recover “damages for the financial harm they suffered.” The suit alleges that the shutdown violated federal minimum-wage and overtime-pay laws. “About 800,000 federal employees have gone without a paycheck since the start of the year due to this shutdown, AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. said in a statement. “While the agreement reached by the White House and Congress will put employees back to work temporarily and allow them to start getting paid, we will not stop fighting until we have full-year funding approved for all our agencies and until all employees are made whole for the income they have lost.” Employees who worked overtime and were not paid, or whose pay for a week amounted to less than minimum wage, are eligible for double pay. The suit covers any federal employee who worked after the shutdown began Dec. 22, is classified as non-exempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act, and was deemed “excepted” by their agency. Read more

February 4, 2019

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