The National Labor Relations Board is charging a California trucking company committed more than 50 labor law violations against its drivers.
The action is against port trucking company Green Fleet Systems, which hauls containers in and out of the Port of Los Angeles and the Port of Long Beach.
It allegedly fired and threatened drivers in a number of different ways for union activities, retaliated against drivers who supported unions and planted an operative in its driver workforce to spy on drivers who supported union organizing.
The drivers’ counsel has filed a request for expedited injunctive relief in federal district court under the National Labor Relations Act, to force the company reinstate the two drivers it fired and to cease and desist from violations of labor law or face contempt of court.
Green Fleet Systems has denied the charges.
An estimated 35 of GFS’ drivers are illegally misclassified as independent contractors, according to a news release from the Teamsters Union backed group Justice for Port Truck Drivers. In early 2013, the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement determined four former GFS drivers had been illegally misclassified as independent contractors and ordered GFS to pay $280,822 in back wages and penalties. Six GFS drivers, have since filed DLSE claims in 2013. The total liability for these claims is approximately $943,000.
GFS could face an additional liability for the unlawful retaliation of firing the two drivers in a potential penalty of $20,000 under California state law. Drivers would also be entitled to back pay and reinstatement under federal law. The second state agency to recognize misclassification at GFS, the California Employment Development Department concluded that two of the six drivers that filed DLSE claims are legally employees and are entitled to unemployment benefits.
Read more about if from the Los Angeles Times.