Employment law case analysis
Fire alarm inspectors who work for New York City go to the central office once a week to turn in inspection files completed and to pick up new inspection files for the coming week. Inspectors must carry these materials with them. They weigh 15-20 pounds. The inspectors contended that, under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FSLA), they should be paid for their time to commute to and from home to work each day because they must carry materials with them. Carrying the materials makes the commute harder. One inspector complained about not being paid for his commute time and contends he was subject to retaliation for enforcement of his FSLA rights.
According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), “travel time is work time if it occurs between when the employee first arrives at the first work site and before the employee leaves the last work site at the end of the work day.” The issue here is carrying of the materials to and from work. So as to determine if these employees should be compensated, we need to determine if the act is within the FLSA laws. It could be true that carrying the materials makes the commuting harder but it does not constitutes their travel time which according to FLSA, “travel time which is all in a day’s work is work time. In this case, there is a need…