Former Cedar Point intern files class action lawsuit regarding unpaid overtime

Friday, March 6, 2020 1:14 PM
Walt's avatar

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Walt Schmidt - Co-Publisher, PointBuzz
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Home to the Biggest Fans of the World's Best Amusement Park

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Friday, March 6, 2020 1:25 PM

I saw this yesterday on Cleveland 19 News. All I can say is, good luck. Perhaps next time they will read their processing in papers before signing.

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Friday, March 6, 2020 1:29 PM
XS NightClub's avatar

And people wonder why they have a hard time recruiting ?


Sandusky Fan.

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Friday, March 6, 2020 5:24 PM
Thabto's avatar

This won't go anywhere. Seasonal workers are exempt from overtime pay.


Brian
Valravn Rides: 23| Steel Vengeance Rides: 23| Dragster Rollbacks: 1
2020 Visits: 2 Next Visit: Don't know yet

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Friday, March 6, 2020 10:56 PM
Cargo Shorts's avatar

I doubt being classified as an intern makes a difference but maybe her lawyer has found an angle to argue with that.

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Saturday, March 7, 2020 10:43 AM
jimmyburke's avatar

Prospective employer of said intern: "Tell me about your experience at that park in Sandusky."

"It was the most miserable experience ever! I was forced to work over 40 hours per week and double shifts many days. In fact, I have filed a lawsuit against them. That'll show em'."

End of interview.

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Saturday, March 7, 2020 6:30 PM

This is a matter of black letter Federal law. Paid interns are entitled to OT. If she made under 47 and change per year.

Corporations have long abused interns/slaves and the concept was rationalized. Cedar Fair should have played by the rules.

https://www3.swipeclock.com/blog/updated-federal-overtime-law-means-tracking-time-for-more-employees/

I love the park and capitalism. But the law is the law.

Last edited by kjettski, Saturday, March 7, 2020 6:32 PM
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Saturday, March 7, 2020 6:43 PM
MichaelB's avatar

kjettski said:

This is a matter of black letter Federal law. Paid interns are entitled to OT. If she made under 47 and change per year.

Corporations have long abused interns/slaves and the concept was rationalized. Cedar Fair should have played by the rules.

https://www3.swipeclock.com/blog/updated-federal-overtime-law-means-tracking-time-for-more-employees/

I love the park and capitalism. But the law is the law.

While the intern's title may have included "intern" I would be willing to bet the paper work the intern signed was them agreeing to be a seasonal employee.

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Saturday, March 7, 2020 7:37 PM
Kevinj's avatar

I'm going to go out on a tiny limb and make the assumption that Cedar Point has a legal team that looks over contracts to make sure the appropriate laws are being followed.

It took me all of about 50 seconds to find this:

https://webapps.dol.gov/elaws/whd/flsa/screen75.asp

And subsequently this:

https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/fact-sheets/18-flsa-seasonal-amusement

The point being, yes, the overtime laws were updated, but there is still a laundry list of exemptions. That list just got a little smaller, but seasonal employees are still exempt. If you are wondering, the first "test" Cedar Point passes is "a business that operates fewer than 7 months per calendar year". And by operate, that means "fully functional", not off-season duties fulfilled by full-time staff.

I wonder if this is her lawyer?

And please...easy on the "slave" and "abuse" language. This isn't a sweat shop in a 3rd world-country; it's a frickin' privilege to earn an internship at a place like Cedar Point. You had to work a 60 hours a week for a whole summer? Cry me a river, and best of luck as an adult.

Last edited by Kevinj, Saturday, March 7, 2020 8:36 PM

Promoter of fog.

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Saturday, March 7, 2020 10:11 PM

The other side of the coin is Cedar Point seasonal employees are also exempt from minimum wage... Has CP ever tried to pull that?


But then again, what do I know?
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Saturday, March 7, 2020 10:19 PM
Jeff's avatar

No one work there. You can make more at any McJob. Heck, you can still make more at a McJob, which probably doesn't help in the recruiting efforts.


Jeff - Advocate of Great Great Tunnels™ - Co-Publisher - PointBuzz - CoasterBuzz - Blog - Music

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Saturday, March 7, 2020 10:23 PM
Cargo Shorts's avatar

Anybody know what the legal difference between and "intern" and a "ride op" is? Why can't the Dippin Dots Guy be an intern?

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 12:18 AM
Skyhawk06's avatar

What about the lemon chill guy? He'd be a better canidate.


Steel Vengeance rides: 169
Favorite coaster: Steel Vengeance ||| Favorite flat: Skyhawk(3 solo)

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 2:59 AM

I worked there the year that they raised the minimum wage after they had set their budget for the year, 1974. The wage had been set at $1.85/hr which was set for all base level employees,(Ops, food service, merchandising, hospitality). The government up the minimum wage to $2.00 before opening day. How they handled this is that they tacked on 15 cents an hour to every hour you worked that season when your processed out. People who paid more than minimum (foreman, asst foreman, locomotive engineers) were paid what their contract said.

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 5:29 AM
XS NightClub's avatar

There’s a whole lot of compensation compliance attorneys hanging out here.

the fact of the matter is...whether or not the park is wrong in this claim, it is definitely part of why they cannot recruit even basically qualified staff.
McDonalds pays more, overtime is offered everywhere else, and working for cedar fair holds no special status.


Sandusky Fan.

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 10:20 AM
Thabto's avatar

They should allow the option of part time work. The way it's set up now, it's 80 hours a week or nothing. For those who want the hours, they can still have them. That can lead to fast burnout and high turnover. And make the living conditions better. Flexibility can go a long way in attracting prospective staff.


Brian
Valravn Rides: 23| Steel Vengeance Rides: 23| Dragster Rollbacks: 1
2020 Visits: 2 Next Visit: Don't know yet

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 11:53 AM

So they work 80 hours a week but only get paid for 40? And they know that going into the job? Who in their right mind would sign up for that?

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 12:33 PM

They get paid 8o hours straight time, no time and a half. Open to close plus was not and is not unusual in the business.

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Sunday, March 8, 2020 12:49 PM

Jeff- You might make more per hour at a McJob but they aren’t hiring full time, let alone offering OT. If you have a limited amount of time to make max dollars and are willing to put in the hours (for example college students on summer break), CP is probably your best bet. You’d make more money overall.

Shades- No, they get paid for every hour they work. But they don’t get time and a half for over 40 hours.

Thabto- You have a very valid point. If I lived in the area I’d be interested in working a shift or two. Heck I used to debate about working HalloWeekends but the drive to and from would require me to take Friday and Monday off from my full time job because they weren’t interested in Saturday & half Sunday. It was all or nothing.


But then again, what do I know?
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Sunday, March 8, 2020 1:27 PM
Kevinj's avatar

Is this a new policy, or just for certain positions?

It has been a couple years, but over Halloweekends in 2017 we ended up striking up a conversation with an older gentleman and his wife (both retired) over lunch; they were locals and said they picked up a few shifts on Sundays. I remember my wife and I thinking how fun that must be for them. Just a great couple working together in the Lakeside Pavilion.

I would think there is a significant amount of people with the exact same mindset.

Last edited by Kevinj, Sunday, March 8, 2020 1:28 PM

Promoter of fog.

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