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A Georgia girl is facing a class-action lawsuit alleging that her school district is violating the Fair Labor Standards Act by failing to provide safe and adequate childcare for her, her sister, her father, and their four-year-old daughter.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Georgia on Monday, alleges that the school district in Paulding County, Georgia, “willfully and unlawfully withheld and violated its statutory obligations under Title VII to provide childcare services for its employees in accordance with the Fair Minimum Wage Act.”
The complaint alleges that “the [Paulding] County School District willfully and unlawfully failed to ensure that the employees of the Pauldings County School district received adequate childcare services and that the children attended the school in a safe and sanitary environment, including with protective clothing, when they left the school,” according to the complaint.
The complaint further alleges that “[t]he Paulders County School Board has refused to provide adequate childcare in accordance, at a minimum, with [the Fair Labor] Standards Act.”
It is the first class-actions lawsuit filed under the federal Fair Labor Act.
The law was passed in 1947 to ensure workers are paid for their hard-earned labor and is considered to be the gold standard of labor protections for women.
The Fair Labor Requirements Act of 1938, which was enacted to protect workers from exploitation, prohibits employers from requiring employees to work from home or to work at a fixed location and requires that employers provide employees with adequate food, clothing, and shelter to survive.
The law also requires employers to pay their workers “fair, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory” wages, according to Fair Labor Board website.
It also prohibits employers and employers’ employees from retaliating against employees for filing complaints about alleged violations of the law, the website states.
The Fair Labor Regulations of 1936, which were enacted in 1944 to protect employees from being fired or discriminated against based on race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, or genetic information, also prohibit retaliation.
The Paulderys family has a child in kindergarten who is the third in line to the fifth grade, and has been living with them since she was 6, according a school district spokesperson.
The family is “working hard to make sure the children are provided a quality education and are doing everything in their power to keep their daughter in school,” the spokesperson said.
The district, however, has failed to provide the family with safe, adequate childcare that meets the Fair Wage Act standards, the spokesperson added.
The spokesperson also said that the Poughman County School System has been in touch with the family to discuss how the family can receive the services they need.
The lawyer representing the family, David N. Smith, told The Associated Press on Monday that he plans to seek class action status.
The school district has said that it is “aware” of the lawsuit and is “actively reviewing it.”
The Pauldses’ lawsuit does not allege any violations of law or policy.