LAS CRUCES, NM – Amid the pandemic, many restaurant workers suffered lost or reduced wages when businesses closed or were forced to limit or suspend indoor dining. For workers employed by a Las Cruces restaurant operator, making ends meet became more difficult when their employer shortchanged them.

U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found Chachi’s LLC – operator of Chachi’s Express, Chachi’s Dona and Chachi’s Mexican restaurant in Las Cruces – did not pay workers overtime when they worked more than 40 hours in a workweek, as the Fair Labor Standards Act requires.

The division’s investigation led to the recovery of $45,700 in back wages for 22 workers.

“Failure to pay workers all of their hard-earned overtime is bad business and it cheats employees and competitors,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Evelyn Ortiz in Albuquerque. “As an employer, Chachi’s LLC must comply with federal worker protections. Amid the pandemic, restaurant employees – like many other frontline workers – put themselves at risk to earn a living and keep businesses open. The last thing they should have to worry about is being shortchanged by their employer.”

For more information about the FLSA and other laws enforced by the division, contact the agency’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division, including a search tool to use if you think you may be owed back wages collected by the division. Workers can call the Wage and Hour Division confidentially with questions – regardless of their immigration status – and the department can speak with callers in more than 200 languages.

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