2013-10-17 / Local & State

Former Amazon Worker In Pa. Sues Over Checkpoints

WILKES-BARRE, Pa. (AP) – A northeastern Pennsylvania woman has filed a lawsuit against Amazon, claiming the online retailing giant failed to pay employees for time spent waiting at security checkpoints at a company distribution center.

Kelly Pavuk of Freeland said state law entitles her and other hourly employees at the warehouse near Hazleton to overtime pay.

A lawsuit filed in Luzerne County Court seeks class-action status on behalf of all employees who worked at the warehouse since 2010, The Times-Leader of Wilkes- Barre reported. Pavuk’s attorney said the suit could cover hundreds of workers.

Amazon’s theft-prevention rules require employees to go through a screening process after they clock out but before they leave the warehouse, the suit said. Pavuk, who worked at the warehouse for seven months in 2012 before suffering a workplace injury, said the mandatory checkpoints take at least 10 to 20 minutes and sometimes longer.

The newspaper said it was unable to reach a Philadelphia based attorney for Amazon for comment. The Seattle based company didn’t immediately respond to e-mail and phone messages Saturday.

Thomas Gilbride Jr., Pavuk’s Scranton-based attorney, said it’s too soon to say how much money the suit may seek to claim.

“Over the course of a year, we could be talking about a lot of personal time,’’ Gilbride said.

Pavuk never complained to management because she “didn’t want to rock the boat,’’ he said.

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