SOUTH SALT LAKE, Utah — A local store specializing in Asian food products is under investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor, and the agency says the company has been interfering.
The U.S. District Court of Utah issued a preliminary injunction earlier this month that prohibits Chinatown Supermarket LLC from "obstructing the department’s investigation in any manner."
The Dept. of Labor alleges that the company "told employees not to talk to investigators or state that employees worked no more than 40 hours per week, required employees to sign nondisclosure agreements and refused to produce time cards kept on the premises."
The court's injunction stated that Chinatown Supermarket and anyone who is employed by them must not do any of the following:
- Instructing workers not to speak with Wage and Hour investigators
- Terminating or threatening to terminate workers for cooperating with the investigation
- Altering, editing or destroying time and payroll records
The company was also ordered to allow the Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division to read a statement to all employees, "informing them of their right to speak with investigators without fear of retaliation or threats of retaliation or intimidation." The statement will be read in English, Spanish and Mandarin.
The agency did not state any specifics on what Chinatown Market is under investigation for, nor what, if any, consequences the company would face if it continued the alleged obstruction.