59 News: Kroger Union members file class action lawsuit alleging wage theft

Jan 19, 2023

RICHMOND, VA (WVNS) — According to information from members with the United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 400 Union, Kroger union members have filed a class action lawsuit alleging wide ranging wage theft.

On Thursday, January 19, 2023, a group of Kroger associates in the Mid-Atlantic region filed the class action lawsuit in federal court in Richmond, Virginia. The lawsuit is alleging their employer was engaging in “widespread wage theft resulting from repeated and ongoing problems with payroll”.

Through a online forum, the UFCW has received more than 1,000 reports from Kroger employees, most of whom are UFCW 400 members, describing multiple problems regarding pay. The problems allegedly range from  missed and incomplete paychecks to improperly deducted taxes and health care premiums, among other issues.

Our union received more than 1,000 reports from members experiencing missing or incorrect paychecks, and we believe there are many more problems that go unreported. Our union has filed grievances, as well as Unfair Labor Practice charges through the National Labor Relations Board. But the company has refused to address the crisis, so our members are taking them to court. Jonathan Williams | UFCW Local 400

One plaintiff, Sharon Simpson, worked for Kroger in Charleston, West Virginia for four weeks from August to September 2022 and never received any pay, which forced her to resign in frustration.

Another plaintiff, Lori Dalton, who works for Kroger in Saint Albans said for almost two months, Ms. Dalton’s copay for spousal insurance was deducted twice from each paycheck, resulting in the loss of hundreds of dollars.

“This is wage theft, plain and simple. When you work for an employer, you should be compensated completely and correctly for every minute you work, and if you aren’t, then your employer is stealing from you. We have received more than 1,000 reports from Kroger employees experiencing payroll problems, and we know for every report we receive there are many, many others that go unreported. Despite using every available avenue to bring these problems to Kroger’s attention, the company has refused to correct its payroll system. This is simply unacceptable.” Mark Federici | President, UFCW Local 400

The United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 400 Union represents approximately 13,000 Kroger associates in Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee.

We are lawyers who seek to improve the world. We fight for: workers deprived of wages, consumers deceived about products, tenants denied access to housing, farmers mistreated by processors, parents deprived of adequate parental leave, investors who were defrauded, small businesses harmed by antitrust violations, persons with disabilities denied access, whistleblowers who uncover fraud, and women and communities of color subject to discrimination.

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