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Queens Chronicle

Laid-off buffet workers suing Resorts World

Allege violation of state and federal laws

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Posted: Thursday, March 27, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 12:23 pm, Thu Apr 3, 2014.

More than 50 former employees of Resorts World Casino New York City who were laid off in January when the Aqueduct Buffet abruptly shut down have teamed up to file a class-action lawsuit against the casino, saying Resorts World violated federal and state laws.

The suit was filed not long after the layoffs in federal District Court in Brooklyn and amended March 17 with 56 more plantiffs’ names.

The workers allege that the casino violated the federal and state Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification acts, which require 60 days and 90 days notice, respectively, when there are 50 or more employees who are laid off together.

More than 100 workers were laid off from the casino on Jan. 6 when the Aqueduct Buffet closed for business. The employees said they were told of the closure and their termination when they arrived to work that morning. The workers said they were given no warning about their impending firing.

Resorts World said it closed the buffet, one of several eateries at the casino, because it was not profitable.

Jesse Rose, a lawyer with Phillips & Associates, representing the workers, said they are seeking redress under both the federal and state WARN acts.

“There’s a federal law and a state law that goes farther, but we filed under federal law because the process is faster,” he explained.

The suit is demanding the casino pay unpaid wages for the length of time that the workers should have been notified of the buffet’s closure as well as other punitive damages, including the plantiffs’ legal costs. Rose said they have not yet decided on a total amount figure yet.

“We have to calculate what people would have been earning for those 60 days starting from the time they were laid off,” he said.

Resorts World did not respond to a request for comment.

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