Two more former workers join Fuyao lawsuit

More workers are joining a lawsuit against Fuyao Glass America, trying to recover what they allege are lost wages and overtime pay.

John Greene and Stephen Newman have filed for consent to join a lawsuit originally filed in June by Julia Staggs, a former employee of Moraine-based Fuyao Glass America.

Staggs is suing Fuyao on behalf of herself and other “similarly situated” Fuyao employees, saying she wanted class-action status for what the lawsuit alleges are unpaid wages and overtime.

The lawsuit was filed in Dayton’s federal court. Staggs worked at Fuyao, which employs about 2,000 people in Moraine, from September to December 2016, according to the Staggs’ filing.

In an amended complaint, Greene’s attorneys wrote that he worked for Fuyao from June 11 to Dec. 28, 2016. Newman was an hourly production worker for Fuyao from September 2015 until May 15, 2017, the filing said.

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The plaintiffs allege that they worked overtime pay without receiving overtime pay — a wage 1.5 times their regular rate — because of what they say is Fuyao’s “automatic meal break deduction policy, rounding policy and ‘off the clock’ policy.”

The suit charges that Fuyao did not allow the plaintiffs “and similarly situated employees” to clock out for meal breaks and clock back in after meal breaks.

Rather, starting in January 2016, Fuyao applied a policy for all hourly production workers, automatically deducting 30 minutes for a meal break, “almost always encompassing hours worked — for each and every day worked,” the lawsuit alleges.

The time was deducted even though the plaintiffs and “similarly situated employees” were not completely relieved from their work duties for the half-hour,” the suit states.

So the employees were “required” to either continue working during what was supposed to be meal breaks or they had to cut their breaks short and return to work before the full half-hour was complete, the suit says.

All “putative (lawsuit) class members” have been subject to the policy, according to the suit.

A message seeking comment was left for a plaintiffs’ attorney.

"Any allegations by the plaintiffs that they were not properly paid by FGA (Fuyao Glass America) are without merit,” a spokeswoman for Fuyao, Lei Shi, said in an email Monday. “Any overtime work was properly paid by FGA to its employees and plaintiffs were not required to work without pay.”

The Moraine auto glass manufacturer was founded by a global, China-based company in 2014, now operating in a former General Motors plant.

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