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Vegan Restaurant Workers Settlement Blown Up By Coronavirus Now Back On Clogged Trial Calendar

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - The Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, May 6 –   Now the Coronavirus is blowing up court settlements. In January 2020, Pamela Blackwell as owner of the vegan restaurants named Blossom du Jour, in Manhattan on 13th Street, 23rd Street, 67th Street and 82nd Street, settled Fair Labor Standard Act claims with her workers. 

  Their complaint described preparing pico de gallo and guacamole without being paid overtime. The settlement would pay these workers the money they were owed.

   But now Blackwell says she can't pay. In a status conference before U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Magistrate Judge Sarah L. Cave on May 6 that Inner City Press alone covered, Blackwell was present.

    She had said, "the restaurant is barely functioning and no one knows where things are headed with this pandemic. Even if the shut down is lifted, there is no way to know if and when business will return or if it will ever survive."  

The plaintiffs' lawyer said they are ready then to move to trial. Magistrate Judge Cave, who had mused about default, told them to re-apply to District Judge Vernon Broderick to seek a trial date, while noting that trial may not begin again until the Fall, and even then.

The case is Ramos, et al. v. BDJVegan1, Inc. et al., 16-cv-8776 (Broderick / Cave).


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