Janz announces probe into Valley Children’s Hospital for claims of wage theft

The Fresno City Attorney’s Office is looking into a claim that Valley Children’s failed to pay at least minimum wage.

The City of Fresno will investigate wage theft claims made against Valley Children’s Hospital. 

Fresno City Attorney Andrew Janz confirmed that his office received the formal complaint made to his office by an employee of Valley Children’s. 

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The backstory: Last Friday a Valley Children’s employee filed a lawsuit against the hospital alleging that it paid below minimum wage for mandatory on-call shifts. 

  • The lawsuit claims that Valley Children’s has historically paid between $6 and $8 per hour for on-call shifts. 

The big picture: Janz released a statement on Wednesday confirming that his office is looking into the case for city residents who work at Valley Children’s. 

  • “My office is in receipt of the formal complaint filed in Madera County by Brian Whelan, the attorney representing those in the class action suit against Valley Children’s which concerns, among other things, wage theft,” Janz said. “The City Attorney’s Office has jurisdiction over any hospital offices and facilities located in the City of Fresno. No further comment will be provided as our investigation is ongoing.” 
  • Janz added that if his office finds the city does not have jurisdiction over the case, it will be handed over to the State Labor Commissioner for prosecution. 

The backstory: This is the first case that the Fresno City Attorney’s Office will investigate since the city council gave it the authority to prosecute wage theft cases earlier this year. 

  • Janz has subpoena powers to investigate the claim, which could result in different findings than what is revealed through the lawsuit in Madera County. 
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