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U.S. Open Security Guards Complain About Employment Violations

By Andrew Lu on September 12, 2012 6:54 AM

So what's it like to work behind the grandest New York sporting event -- the U.S. Open? Well, it's not as glamorous as one would think, if the claims of a group of U.S. Open security guards are true.

The U.S. Open tennis tournament just finished with one of the most exciting finals ever. But just as Andy Murray was finishing off Novak Djokovic in a five-set classic, several security guards working the event came public with allegations of the violations they had to endure working the event, reports The Village Voice.

The U.S. Open security guards made a variety of claims running the gamut of employment law. Below is a quick overview of the claims made by the guards, as reported by The Village Voice:

  • Rest Breaks. The guards said they often had to work 16 hour shifts. And they were expected it to hold it the entire time, as they claim they were not given bathroom breaks.
  • Racial Discrimination and Harassment. A variety of claims were made by the U.S. Open security guards ranging from racially derogatory comments and reserving the best jobs for white security guards.
  • Unhealthy Work Environment. The guards claim they had to work the 16 hour shifts while standing outside in the New York City heat. Some guards claim they even passed out due to the stifling heat.
  • Unpaid Wages. It's one thing to take on an unpleasant job, but it's another thing not to get paid for it. Some guards claim that in years past, they were never paid for all their hours worked.
  • Retaliation. A security guard claims that he was let go as a result of complaining about these violations.

It takes a lot of work for a major event like the U.S. Open to go off without a hitch. But while workers in the background like security guards may be asking for too much if they expect recognition, it would not be asking too much to be treated fairly (and legally).

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