Oh the irony. A poor guy goes to lunch, attends a luncheon, talks about lunch break rights and gets suspended for doing so.
Normally, I’d be really concerned about this (and I am) but the guy in this story is none other than Miles Locker of the infamous “Locker Letter”. You know, the one that made all of us California HR professionals collectively scratch our heads and say “HUH?!” at the same time. This opinion letter stated that California employers should pay their exempt employees a “pre-determined monthly salary of at least twice the minimum wage” for any work that had been performed within the month. This was a wide interpretation of the FLSA, which traditionally required that an exempt employee should be paid for any work performed during the week, regardless of the number of hours or days worked. Luckily, the Labor Commissioner and the IWC rejected the Locker letter and allowed for the traditional interpretation of the FLSA. Whew…
In the meanwhile, it seems like the poor guy just can’t get a break – first he was demoted and now he’s suspended. The suspension, per Cal Law, “a move his attorney attributes to his penchant for issuing opinions that irritate employers. ”
I’m not sure if that’s exactly the case, but karma can be circular.
His suspension has also been attributed to his strong opposition to the governor’s attempt “to weaken workers’ meal rights”. That I can believe.
In the meanwhile, however, is his suspension valid? Maybe, maybe not. He was on his own time, not representing the agency. But there’s no fighting the Governator.
But I wouldn’t worry about Locker too much – he’ll be back.