Amazon’s Warehouse Wages Get a Review From the Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court will be reviewing a case involving the labor practices at Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN). According to Bloomberg, the justices agreed Monday to evaluate a federal appeals court decision that affects the workers at Amazon warehouses who are forced to spend unpaid time undergoing security searches. Former employees of Integrity Staffing Solutions, a provider of temporary workers for Amazon, filed a lawsuit over the security lines meant to prevent employee theft at Amazon warehouses in Nevada, and now the U.S. Supreme Court has been enlisted to review the federal appeals court decision that allows such a suit to be filed.
Bloomberg reports that Jesse Busk and Laurie Castro, both employees of Integrity Staffing Solutions, claimed in their suit that workers employed in Nevada warehouses had to spend as much as 25 minutes after their shifts ended to pass through metal detectors. Similar claims have been filed against companies like CVS Pharmacy (NYSE:CVS) and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and the results of those suits led corporate groups to recently urge the Supreme Court to take up the appeal against Amazon, charging that the security searches are necessary.
The Fair Labor Standards Act is expected to be the crux of the case brought to the high court. This act requires compensation for pre- and post-shift activities that are “integral and indispensable” to an employee’s principal activities, per Bloomberg. In January, a similar case was brought before the Supreme Court, in which the justices ruled that companies don’t have to pay workers for time spent putting on and taking off safety gear if a collective bargaining agreement precludes compensation. Now, it’ll be interesting to see if the high court rules similarly this month.