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Post Reply DNC Workers Sue Party for Receiving Sub-Minimum Wages, No Overtime
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Posted 5/15/17
How is it that the DNC wants businesses to pay $15/hour yet they can't even pay their own workers min wage?


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia has paid out nearly a million dollars to staff members, and local institutions, from leftover money it raised to stage the event.

But, dozens of people who worked in the field elsewhere in the country for Democrats feel shortchanged and are now part of a class action federal lawsuit.

The bonuses ranged from $500 for interns to more than $300,000 for the executive director.

“I think everyone’s reaction is the same. It’s obscene,” says Justin Swidler, a Cherry Hill-based attorney.

Swidler is pursuing a lawsuit on behalf of 40-to-50 “field organizers” all over the country, whom he says were denied overtime compensation.

“One of the arguments that the Democrats are making is that they just don’t have the money to pay overtime to their workers,” said Swidler.

The named defendants are the Democratic National Committee, the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and five more state party organizations.

“These workers were out there in a campaign that was promising $15 an hour minimum wage, and expanding the overtime rights of workers,” Swidler said.

Former Governor Ed Rendell, who served as chairman of the Host Committee, points out those were “totally different operations.” He says none of the plaintiffs worked for the Host Committee, and it was not named in the suit.

“In fact, we gave our interns, and our unpaid volunteers, bonuses at the end,” said Rendell.

Rendell notes when he hired Host Committee workers, he made it clear, since they didn’t know how much money would be raised, salaries would be below market rates.

Rendell says because of a surplus, they were able to do “salary adjustments and bonuses.” Also, leftover money went to the School District of Philadelphia ($750,000) and several non-profits ($10,000 each to the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, the Food Trust of Philadelphia, and the Committe of Seventy, and $25,000 each to Independence Visitor Center and Visit Philly).

One of the lead plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit is Bethany Katz of Rosemont.

Swidler says she and others believed in the Democratic platform and ideals, and put in 80-to-90-hours a week in the last stages of the race to support Hillary Clinton.

“They got paid a flat salary of $3,000 a month, which isn’t even minimum wage for some of the hours that they were working,” said Swidler.

He says the lawsuit seeks “fair pay for fair work,” and holding the Democratic Party to the very ideals that it embraces.
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Posted 5/15/17 , edited 5/15/17
3,000 per month seems quite low for an election campaign job. That's like....36,000 USD. Jesus. That being said, I believe there is a difference between a salary and hourly wage, with wage jobs being cut out with all the new legislation about pay in lieu of a fixed salary. Not sure of the specific laws.
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Posted 5/15/17

PeripheralVisionary wrote:

3,000 per month seems quite low for an election campaign job. That's like....36,000 USD. Jesus. That being said, I believe there is a difference between a salary and hourly wage, with wage jobs being cut out with all the new legislation about pay in lieu of a fixed salary. Not sure of the specific laws.


Salary is a fixed amount and variable amount of hours. However it is generally accepted as paying significantly more than an hourly wage. Anything over 60 hours a week seems like a scam unless your being paid a LOT. Typically has good benefits.

You all know about hourly hopefully.
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Posted 5/15/17

Rujikin wrote:


PeripheralVisionary wrote:

3,000 per month seems quite low for an election campaign job. That's like....36,000 USD. Jesus. That being said, I believe there is a difference between a salary and hourly wage, with wage jobs being cut out with all the new legislation about pay in lieu of a fixed salary. Not sure of the specific laws.


Salary is a fixed amount and variable amount of hours. However it is generally accepted as paying significantly more than an hourly wage. Anything over 60 hours a week seems like a scam unless your being paid a LOT. Typically has good benefits.

You all know about hourly hopefully.


I know the basic differences, but I am not sure of the overtime laws concerning salary jobs, or what they should specifically be. I do not have one like most people my age, just hourly wages at several jobs. Seems like the same argument of additional pay for overtime should apply here, depending on the hours. I am not knowledgeable about this topic



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Posted 5/15/17
depends on state. But generally, Overtime must still be paid to even those on salary. Based on what their hourly wage would be once broken down.
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Posted 5/15/17

Rujikin wrote:

The bonuses ranged from $500 for interns to more than $300,000 for the executive director.


You mean they payed the management more than the workers?! Those kulak pigs!
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Posted 5/15/17

karatecowboy wrote:


Rujikin wrote:

The bonuses ranged from $500 for interns to more than $300,000 for the executive director.


You mean they payed the management more than the workers?! Those kulak pigs!


I know the people wanting to redistribute the wealth are paying their executive directors 600x the average intern.
qwueri 
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Posted 5/15/17
Link for the article: http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2017/05/12/dnc-workers-file-lawsuit-for-fair-pay/

Sounds like a dispute about overtime compensation, which could be pretty tricky for the plaintiffs if their positions are overtime exempt.
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Posted 5/15/17

Rujikin wrote:


I know the people wanting to redistribute the wealth are paying their executive directors 600x the average intern.


Yah. Democratic congressional offices make frat boys look polite.

But to progressives it doesn't matter how you behave as a person. It matters that you push the right political stances. That's why Billy Clinton is considered a women's rights champion, despite being a womanizer, misogynist, serial adulterer, and possibly even a rapist.
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Posted 5/15/17

qwueri wrote:

Link for the article: http://philadelphia.cbslocal.com/2017/05/12/dnc-workers-file-lawsuit-for-fair-pay/

Sounds like a dispute about overtime compensation, which could be pretty tricky for the plaintiffs if their positions are overtime exempt.


I've seen lawsuits go through because while someone was considered salary they were treated like hourly. The "salary" was considered a way of avoiding overtime while technically working them hourly. Not sure if it was a state law or not but considering the campaign was national.... It just takes 1state.
runec 
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Posted 5/15/17 , edited 5/16/17
Just so I have this clear: The attorney is using the example of the compensation structure of a different organization, for a different event, that isn't named in the lawsuit and whom none of the plaintiff's belong to as part of his argument?
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Posted 5/15/17
Seems to me that if they had enough left over to pay the brass a $300k bonus + $750k to the Philadelphia School District + $10k - $25k to multiple other charities then they had more then enough to pay the workhorses more when all is said and done. I could see the pretext that the wages may be sub-par to minimum wage in the end due to how much they raised in the process being a primary factor in the issue and being a unknown variable at that. That being said they should have put all of the excess funds, sans the charity donations, into paying the little guys a fair wage instead of shelling out that kind of cash to the management while crying poor when it comes to paying the rest of the workers better. They did do the vast majority of the work. After all one of the main campaign sticking points was the minimum wage being so low compared to the exorbitant income of the %1. This just looks bad for the DNC even if the claims of criminal wrongdoing have no merit in the end.
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55 / M / Atlanta GA
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Posted 5/16/17
The DNC is the party for the rich. They forgot the working person long time ago.
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24 / M / San Diego, CA
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Posted 5/16/17
Wouldn't this thread get a lot more attention if you said it was the RNC being sued?

Just Saiyan
runec 
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Posted 5/16/17

Murasaki_Kirei wrote:
Wouldn't this thread get a lot more attention if you said it was the RNC being sued?


If the RNC was being sued ( which it is, actually ) Ruji wouldn't have made a thread in the first place.


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