$2.7M settlement for wage violations reached for 332 NYC Health + Hospitals contracted temporary workers

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A $2.7 million settlement was reached for prevailing wage violations involving 332 temporary office workers at hospitals and medical centers contracted by NYC Health + Hospitals Corporation and the staffing provider, Winston Support Services, LLC.

In total, $2,730,526.06 was paid to the workers, which accounts for back wages, civil penalties, and interest. The settlement also applies to temporary office workers at healthcare facilities that Winston Support Services, LLC hired between April 2015 and June 2018. These include hospitals such as Harlem Hospital, Jacobi Medical Center, Bellevue Hospital, Lincoln Hospital, and Queens’ Elmhurst Hospital.

Winston misclassified these temporary workers as positions of lower pay despite the fact they were performing duties that corresponded to higher-paying roles under New York City Comptroller Brad Lander’s wage schedule. Among the clerical tasks that these workers performed were maintaining medical and payroll records, making appointments for patients and providing transcription through a temporary services contract between Winston and NYC Health + Hospitals. Due to the misclassifications, many of the workers lost out on significant wages, with one of the 332 being shorted almost $100,000 during this three-year span.

“Winston misclassified hundreds of temporary office workers, resulting in millions of dollars in underpayments,” Comptroller Lander said. “Winston neglected to perform the necessary due diligence and oversight, and as a result, many workers missed out on thousands of dollars. This settlement holds Winston accountable and returns the hard-earned wages rightfully owed to these office workers.”

The New York City Comptroller is responsible for setting and enforcing wage laws, both prevailing and living, for public works projects and certain service contracts under the New York Labor Law. New York City’s Living Wage Law, NYC Administrative Code § 6-109, covers temporary office workers like those in this case under prevailing wage.

“This settlement marks a huge win for over 300 workers who missed out on their rightful wages due to misclassification. After a lengthy, multi-year investigation and audit, our office reached a victorious settlement for deserving workers. We will continue to vigorously enforce prevailing wage requirements to protect workers’ rights and hold employers accountable,” Claudia Henriquez, Director of Workers’ Rights at the Comptroller’s Bureau of Labor Law, said.