Employees from Tyson Foods, Inc. poultry processing plants in Arkansas filed a lawsuit against Tyson for overtime pay violations (Adams, et al. v. Tyson Foods, Inc., U.S. District Court, Western District of Arkansas). The lawsuit claims that Tyson violated the FLSA by failing to pay its employees for the time spent donning and doffing required gear and equipment, as well as time spent walking, waiting, and performing other job duties “off the clock.” Tyson is facing lawsuits throughout the U.S. for alleged FLSA overtime pay violations at its chicken processing and meat processing facilities.
Tyson and others in the poultry and meat processing industries have longstanding differences with workers and the U.S. Department of Labor over industry pay practices. These differences appeared to be finally resolved when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of workers in Alvarez v. IBP. Still IBP (now Tyson) and other employers refuse to pay workers for time spent donning and doffing required gear and equipment. According to the Department of Labor workers should be paid for this time.