Investigation Recovers $45,000 in Back Wages from Mt. Clifton Fruit Company, LLC that Denied Dozens of Agricultural Workers Full Wages, Transportation, and Housing.
Washington, DC (STL.News) The U.S. Department of Labor released the following information regarding back wages:
Employer name: Mt. Clifton Fruit Company LLC
Investigation site: 17581 Mechanicsville Road, Timberville, VA 22853
Investigative Findings: The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division found the employer violated multiple requirements of the H-2A agricultural worker program by failing to do the following:
- Compensate 55 workers, 50 of whom came from Mexico, for all hours worked.
Comply with the requirements of the agricultural job order.
- Pay the hourly adverse effect wage rates of $13.15 in 2021, $14.16 in 2022, and $14.91 in 2023.
- Comply with safety and health requirements for housing and transporting H-2A workers.
Request a preoccupancy inspection of housing in a timely way.
- Comply with other applicable federal, state, and local employment-related laws and regulations.
- Back wages recovered: $45,384
Civil money penalties: $8,998
Workers affected: 55, which includes 50 H-2A program workers and five other workers.
Quote: “Our investigation found the Mt. Clifton Fruit Company denied dozens of agricultural workers, many of whom traveled to the U.S. at the company’s request, safe housing, and transportation, and their legally earned wages,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Roberto Melendez in Richmond, Virginia. “In addition to recovering back wages, we assessed penalties for these deliberate violations.”
Background: Mt. Clifton Fruit Company LLC is an agricultural fixed-site employer that specializes in growing and harvesting a variety of apples that are sold retail, direct to consumers, and to processors in the U.S.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Labor