Nov. 27, 2019 By Kristen Torres
The owner of five McDonald’s franchise locations in Queens has been ordered to pay $155,000 to his employees in restitution for violating city labor laws, according to the mayor’s office Tuesday.
An investigation by the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) revealed Thomas Parker — of Star Parker LLC — violated his employees’ rights to a predictable work schedule, along with denying paid and sick leave.
Parker retaliated against employees who confronted him about the violations by reducing their shifts and even firing a worker, according to DCWP findings.
The five McDonald’s locations run by Parker include three in Jamaica, one in Woodside — located at 51-35 Northern Boulevard — and one at 31-67 Steinway Street in Astoria, according to a spokesperson for the mayor’s office.
“Make no mistake: in our city, fast food workers have the right to predictable schedules and paid safe and sick leave,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio in a statement. “No worker should be afraid to exercise their rights, and any corporation that retaliates against workers will be met with the full force of the law.”
The Fair Workweek Law went into effect in November 2017. It gave fast food employees in New York City the right to know when and how often they will be scheduled, along with the opportunity to work newly available shifts before a company hires new workers, according to the statement.
Star Parker LLC must now pay $500 to 278 employees, with two workers who experience retaliation to get about $13,500.
Star Parker will now have to retain an independent compliance monitor as part of the settlement to ensure compliance with the city’s workplace law. The firm will also have to train managers and supervisors on the city’s Fair Workweek and Paid Safe and Sick Leave laws.
“It is unacceptable that employers continue to retaliate against employees for exercising their rights,” said DCWP Commissioner Lorelei Salas. “Let this settlement be an example to all employers who think they are about the law — you are not.”