Federal employees who were exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace are now able to join a class-action lawsuit brought by the American Federation of Government Employees and Heidi Burakiewicz of the law firm Kalijarvi, Chuzi, Newman and Fitch.
A new website has just launched at www.hazardpaylawsuit.com that allows employees to join the lawsuit, which was the first case filed on behalf of workers arising out of the pandemic.
Here are a few things you need to know about the case:
- You MUST fill out and submit the form on the website to join the case and be eligible to receive damages
Unlike traditional class actions where people are automatically included, you MUST sign up to be part of a case pending at the Court of Federal Claims or alleging a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”). Only the people who fill out and submit the necessary forms will be eligible to recover damages from our case.
The link to the sign-up form is: https://www.HazardPayLawsuit.com/.
- The case is for ALL affected employees
Our lawsuit was filed on behalf of all eligible federal employees who were exposed to COVID-19 during the performance of their official duties as long as their position description does not take into account exposure to infectious diseases like COVID-19. As we have said before, we are sending this message to let you know that AFGE has you covered.
- AFGE and Heidi Burakiewicz, a partner at KCNF, have been leading the fight to ensure that federal workers who put their health and safety on the line by reporting to work during the COVID-19 pandemic receive hazard pay
We are proud to have filed the first lawsuit on behalf of workers arising out of the pandemic, but, unfortunately, as our case proceeded, several other lawsuits were filed seeking hazard pay for certain groups of federal employees.
In one of those cases, the judge dismissed the case. The attorney in that case is appealing the dismissal to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The government has moved to stay our case until that appeal is decided.
We always knew this was going to be a tough fight, and that it could be a lengthy fight. But we know it’s a fight worth having – one that workers should win.
“Federal workers who risked their lives and their families’ lives while performing their jobs absolutely should be compensated for the hazards they faced,” Burakiewicz said. “We encourage all federal employees who had to leave the safety of their homes to go to work during the pandemic to join our lawsuit by registering online today.”