BALTIMORE — (RealEstateRama) — Four former employees of Homefix filed a collective- and class-action lawsuit on Wednesday, April 24, against the home remodeling company, the 18th largest in the nation, for unpaid wages and racial discrimination. They allege that that Homefix did not pay them minimum or overtime wages and sometimes did not pay them at all. They also allege that the company segregated them by race in the neighborhoods where they were assigned to work, denying people of color the opportunity to work in neighborhoods where they could earn more money.
As Lead Developers for Homefix, the plaintiffs were among a large cadre of workers tasked with generating appointments for the sales staff in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC. They worked 50-80 hours a week canvassing door-to-door and representing the business at kiosks at trade shows and stores. The complaint alleges that Homefix did not pay Lead Developers minimum wage or overtime for the long hours. The complaint alleges that Homefix promised to pay employees based on the sales appointments they generated, yet routinely failed to pay their full wages by hiding the results of the appointments.
“When Homefix recruited me, they promised a lot of things—hundreds of dollars a day, full-time pay for part-time hours,” said plaintiff Antonio Dorsey. “But I worked long hours and they always tried to find ways not to pay me. The work and the pay never added up.”
In addition to the alleged wage violations, the complaint alleges that Homefix discriminated against those Lead Developers who are people of color. They assigned Lead Developers to canvass in neighborhoods based on race, sending white employees to white neighborhoods and non-white employees to non-white neighborhoods. Since the white neighborhoods tended to be more affluent than the non-white neighborhoods, this practice made it easier for white Lead Developers to generate sales appointments and earn more money than Lead Developers of color.
The case is Baylor, et.al. v. Homefix Custom Remodeling Corporation, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. The class plaintiffs are represented by the Public Justice Center, Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, and the law firm Murphy Anderson.
ABOUT MURPHY ANDERSON PLLC
Murphy Anderson PLLC is a Washington D.C.-based law firm representing workers, whistleblowers, and unions.
ABOUT THE PUBLIC JUSTICE CENTER
The Public Justice Center pursues systemic change to build a just society. We use legal advocacy tools to pursue social justice, economic and race equity, and fundamental human rights for people who are struggling to provide for their basic needs. We provide advice and representation to low-income clients, advocate before legislatures and government agencies, and collaborate with community and advocacy organizations. www.publicjustice.org
ABOUT THE WASHINGTON LAWYERS’ COMMITTEE
Founded in 1968, The Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs works to create legal, economic and social equity through litigation, client and public education and public policy advocacy. While we fight discrimination against all people, we recognize the central role that current and historic race discrimination plays in sustaining inequity and recognize the critical importance of identifying, exposing, combating and dismantling the systems that sustain racial oppression. For more information, please visit www.washlaw.org or call 202.319.1000. Follow us on Twitter at @WashLaw4CR.