Note: This story appears in the Sunday, June 16 newspaper on Page A3.

A lawsuit filed in federal court asserts that employees at an Athens call center have not been paid for time they worked.

Troy Foster of Athens, who was or is an employee of the call center operated by Residential Programs Inc. at the Market on State, claims that the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and Ohio law have been violated.

A telephone message was left by The Messenger on Friday with the New Jersey-based company, but it was not immediately returned.

The lawsuit asks the court to declare it a class-action case representing other current and former employees who worked for the company in Ohio from June 4, 2016 to the present.

Also named as defendants in the case are Robert Bayer, Lee Ostrowsky and Dan Lass, who, the lawsuit states, were involved in day-to-day operations and/or involved in management of the company’s employees, including Foster.

The lawsuit claims employees were not paid for work performed before clocking in each day, including starting and logging into the company’s computer systems, numerous software applications and the phone system, and were not paid for time spent logging out at the end of the shift. The lawsuit estimates the time spent logging in and out was about 15 to 20 minutes if the computer systems were working property.

According to the lawsuit, Residential Programs Inc. is a for-profit telemarketing business that solicits donations for various organizations.

The court case claims employees engaged in multiple “campaigns” per day, but were not paid for time spent between campaigns or participating in mandatory meetings or any other time spent working while not logged into a campaign.

Because employees allegedly were not being paid for all the time they worked, they were not paid at an overtime rate for time worked beyond 40 hours per week, the lawsuit asserts.

The lawsuit claims the company violated the Fair Labor Standards Act, Ohio law and the Ohio Constitution.

The court case, filed by attorney Michael Fradin, seeks damages for unpaid wages, liquidated damages, interest and attorney fees.

srobb@athensmessenger.com; Twitter @SteveRmessenger

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