The Department Of Labor's Wage and Hour Division has increased its enforcement and outreach efforts, says U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis.
Solis says the division has hired 250 new investigators, increasing its staff by more than 33 percent.
"America's workers should rest assured that protecting worker rights is a top priority at the Department of Labor,” Solis said. "In the past three months alone, the department has had several significant enforcement cases, including collecting nearly $2 million in back wages for more than 500 workers.”
The division enforces minimum wage, overtime, and other rules governing wages and the hours that employees work.
"There is no excuse for employers who disregard federal labor standards – especially those that are designed to protect the most vulnerable in the workplace,” said Solis. “The failure to comply with these basic labor standards means that workers are not receiving the money they have earned. It is both an economic issue and a fairness issue.”
In addition to beefing up its enforcement efforts, the department will launch an outreach campaign aimed at informing workers about their rights.