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“No one should be a victim of wage theft! We have to keep in mind that by law: an worked is an hour paid! It’s our right as workers to be paid for our hours worked.” Cindy Flores
Cindy worked at a daycare center for approximately 1 month before she had to face the decision of leaving since she was not being paid for her work.
“I didn’t have any money to pay my bills and personal expenses.” As with most cases, the financial hardship to the workers whose wages are stolen really take a toll on their daily living. In Cindy’s case this meant not being able to pay for her school supplies and expenses at UNM.
After two weeks of work when the first pay period came around, she was denied a paycheck. The administrator gave her an explanation stating that she needed to wait for an extra two weeks before receiving her first payment. “[At this point] Obviously there was something wrong because I had already been working…This is when I knew she was stealing my wages.”
Due to the lack of payment, Cindy decided to resign at the beginning of September. She asked for her final paycheck but was told she needed to wait until Nov. 5 to get it. “I decided to wait, in case they actually paid me. The reason why I decided to wait was because my mom (Sabina Armendariz) worked at this same establishment and I didn’t want her to suffer from any sort of retaliation if I had decided to take a legal action against this business.”
Once Nov. 5 came around, she went back to ask for her final check but it was denied again and she was told she needed to wait for another two weeks. “A week later 3 other workers including my mom decided to leave this business for the same reason– Wage Theft. We then decided to go to Workforce Solutions and file a case against the daycare.”
Cindy, along with her mom (Sabina) and her aunt (Nirma), learned about El CENTRO through different friends who talked about their different services for wage theft cases and other labor justice cases. “[At El CENTRO] They have guided us, they supported us and helped plan a protest against this business…they are continually staying updated on our case.”
Currently, Cindy is waiting for a court hearing date to fight her wage theft case. She is optimistic the court will side with her and the rest of the women who lived the same situation. “No one should be a victim of wage theft!”