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Restaurant workers sue for wage theft

Restaurant workers are filing a federal lawsuit today against  an Andersonville restaurant charging wage theft.

Supported by the Restaurant Opportunities Center of Chicago, four employees of the upscale Mexican restaurant Ole Ole are filing suit seeking back wages.  They are represented by attorneys from the Working Hands Legal Clinic.

Restaurant employees and supporters will protest outside the restaurant, 5413 N. Clark, today at 6 p.m. and plan to continue with weekly protests calling on the owner to negotiate a settlement.

According to ROC, waiters from Ole Ole complain they are not paid an hourly wage and do not always receive tips left on credit cards; cooks complain they often worked 50 to 60 hours but are not paid for their full hours, and sometimes not paid at all; and workers of color complain of racist remarks and discrimination based on national origin.

ROC said employees claimed they had not been paid over $100,000 in hourly wages and misappropriated tips.

Next Tuesday, ROC is releasing a study based on a survey of Chicago restaurant workers and employers.  A large proportion of Chicago’s restaurant workers earn poverty-level wages, ROC’s policy director Jose Oliva told Newstips in December. (See that piece for background on ROC.)

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Category: Andersonville, labor


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