New York is a great city, but as Marco Lino can attest, a workers’ paradise it is not.
For four years, Lino, 53, worked 13 hours a day, six days a week stocking shelves at Rosemary’s Farm, a small grocery store in Flushing. His weekly salary was $350, that is, about $4.65 an hour. In October 2008 he was fired after protesting to his boss about his meager — and illegal — salary and filed a complaint at the Department of Labor. Six years have passed, and Lino is still waiting for justice.
“I am tired of waiting,” he said.
“(Wage theft) has become a crime wave here in New York State,” said Joann Lum, executive director of the National Mobilization Against SweatShops.
“Under Gov. Cuomo, the DOL is not enforcing labor laws. We need a DOL that does its job, not one that promotes wage-theft crimes. If the DOL will not do this, we will sue them.”
Currently, over $1 billion in wages are stolen from New York workers in low-wage industries each year.