U.S. Department of Labor Orders NFI Industries’ California Cartage Warehouse to Repay Workers $3.5 Million in Back Wages and Benefits
PORT OF LOS ANGELES/LONG BEACH – On September 13, 2018, the United States Department of Labor (USDOL) announced that California Cartage Company, LLC – owned by National Freight Industries (NFI) and based in Long Beach, California – must pay $3,573,074 to more than 1,400 employees (permanent and temporary) after the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division found the company violated federal contract provisions of the McNamara-O’Hara Service Contract Act by failing to pay prevailing wages, as well as health and welfare benefits, to employees at NFI/Cal Cartage’s Carson warehouse. Click here to read the USDOL press release.
NFI/California Cartage, based in Long Beach, CA, with warehousing and drayage operations at property owned by the Port of Los Angeles, in Carson, and across the U.S., is one of the largest goods movement companies in America. The California Cartage family of companies was recently acquired by New Jersey-based National Freight Industries and continues to be the largest trucking operation at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach by a wide margin. The company has been the subject of significant regulatory action and litigation due to persistent exploitation of the company’s drivers and warehouse workers serving America’s largest port complex.
- Click here for a current summary of regulatory action and litigation facing NFI/Cal Cartage.
- Click here for an up-to-date summary of regulatory action and litigation facing the port trucking industry at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.
“This company steals wages from drivers and warehouse workers every day, and they use every trick in the corporate playbook – many illegal, all unethical – to divide workers and slash employee costs: misclassifying drivers as independent contractors, staffing warehouses with permanent temporary employees, paying workers less than the required minimum wage, and forcing employees to toil off the clock. They think they can get away with it because most of us are immigrants, but those days are over – we’re fighting back and taking the fight to NFI’s customers, including Lowes, Amazon, Puma, and others. NFI/Cal Cartage warehouse workers and port truck drivers are united and we won’t stop until we get justice,” said Juan Lara, a port truck driver fighting for his employee rights at NFI’s California Cartage Express division.
“NFI/California Cartage has shown that they don’t care about the law,” said Jose Rodriguez, a warehouse worker at NFI/California Cartage. “They think they can silence us warehouse workers and truck drivers by disrespecting us, making us wait every day to see if we are going to get any work, steal our wages, and retaliate against us for speaking up. We won’t be silenced. This type of wage theft and the company ignoring the laws is why we have gone on strike five times and we will continue to stand up and take action until Cal Cartage follows the law and respects our rights.”
“As a market leader at the ports, NFI/Cal Cartage’s persistent illegal and unconscionable business practices have made it very difficult for companies that have determined that it’s in their best business interest to follow U.S. labor laws to compete and thrive. The USDOL’s determination sends a strong message to workers that standing up for your rights pays off, and to companies that they are not above the law. It’s past time for NFI and other companies to clean up their business model by complying with the rules of the game,” said Fred Potter, Vice President, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, and Director of the Teamsters Port Division.