HENRY, TN – The U.S. Department of Labor has filed a complaint and motion seeking a temporary restraining order to prevent a Henry County farm from allegedly retaliating against two workers who asked about their wages, a protected activity under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Filed by the department on Feb. 21, 2024, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee, the action asks the court to stop Tosh Pork LLC and human resources manager, Dianna Rosa, from continuing to violate the FLSA through retaliatory actions against employees. Federal law prohibits an employer from firing or discriminating against workers who have filed a complaint or cooperated in its investigation. The department’s Wage and Hour Division found that two Tosh Pork workers who provide animal care to the farm’s pigs cooperated with division investigators after the workers asked their employer about their pay. After Tosh Pork learned of an initial complaint, the employer tasked one employee with cleaning offices and bathrooms – as well as picking up pig waste — activities outside of their normal job duties. After accusing the employee of filing a federal complaint — Tosh Pork allegedly tried to force them to sign a document forbidding them from speaking with other employees about pay issues. Investigators also learned another worker, who had also asked about their wages, was called to meet with the farm’s management and threatened with termination. Returning to their workstation, they found a severed pig’s head. “Tosh Pork’s appalling actions and clear attempts to intimidate and retaliate against its employees will not be tolerated,” explained Regional Solicitor Tremelle Howard in Atlanta. “The U.S. Department of Labor will use every tool available to ensure the protections afforded to workers under the law.”During its investigation, the agency also determined Tosh Pork failed to meet employment requirements for H-2A visa workers, and corresponding U.S. workers, under the Immigration and Nationality Act. The division found the employer owed five workers $39,375 in back wages and assessed $36,731 in civil money penalties. “Federal law protects employees who provide information to the U.S. Department of Labor,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Lisa Kelly in Nashville, Tennessee. “Any worker who wishes to share concerns about their workplace with our trained professionals should know that they can do so without fear of being fired or discriminated against at their workplace.”Through the H-2A agricultural guest worker program, Tosh Pork employs people from foreign countries to work on its farm. The company owns 11,000 acres of land where it produces swine and grows corn, soybeans, wheat, canola and barley. Tosh Pork LLC has sold its products for national and international distribution to JBS USA, Kroger and Costco.The Wage and Hour Division offers confidential compliance assistance to anyone – regardless of where they are from – with questions about how to comply with the law by calling the agency’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). The division can speak with callers in more than 200 languages.Learn more about the Wage and Hour Division.

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