Published Date: 10/20/2014
By George Ports
The US Department of Labor (USDOL) filed a petition for a temporary restraining order and obtained a consent order enjoining Atlanta-based Antico Foods LLC and its owner from intimidating and retaliating against their employees who are cooperating in a federal investigation.
The USDOL’s Wage and Hour Division began an investigation of Antico Foods in July 2014 to determine if the business complied with the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Antico Foods’ employees, soon after the investigation began, reported to investigators that the company owner accused an employee of cooperating with Wage and Hour and terminated the employee. Furthermore, he instructed employees to hide from investigators and to provide false information to investigators about their work hours and the identity of their employer. The owner also reportedly threatened the employees with termination of employment.
The consent order prohibits Antico Foods and the owner from terminating employment; retaliating or discriminating against employees they believe have spoken with or will speak to Wage and Hour Division investigators; instructing employees to not speak with or to provide false information to investigators; and obstructing the investigation.
The order also requires the defendants to allow a USDOL representative to provide employees with an oral and written statement about their rights to speak with investigators without fear of retaliation.
For more information about the FLSA and other federal wage laws, go to http://www.dol.gov/whd.