Monday, June 19, 2023

The 7th nominee for the “Worst Employer of 2023” is … the pretend priest

"Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. Twice I asked a co-worker to punch my time card to cover my tardiness; once I called off sick when I was really playing golf; and I spoke to a Department of Labor investigator about my belief that I haven't be paid correctly."

Pursuant to a consent judgment with the Department of Labor, Che Garibaldi Inc., the operator of Taqueria Garibaldi, has agreed to pay $140,000 in back wages and damages to 35 employees based on claims that the employer used a fake priest to coerce confessions from employees and then used that information to retaliate against them.

According to the DOL, "The restaurant offered employees a person identified as a priest to hear confessions during work hours. The employee told the court the priest urged workers to 'get the sins out,' and asked employees if they had stolen from the employer, been late for work, had done anything to harm their employer, or if they had bad intentions toward their employer." 

"This employer's despicable attempts to retaliate against employees were intended to silence workers, obstruct an investigation and prevent the recovery of unpaid wages," says Regional Solicitor of Labor Marc Pilotin. 

The DOL adds that this "scam" is "among the most shameless" … "kind of … to shortchange workers and to intimidate or retaliate against employees." It's hard to disagree, which is why this employer earned my 7th nomination for the Worst Employer of 2023.