A new survey of fast food workers in New York City revealed some disturbing truths about just how awful it can be to work for some the nation's biggest chains. Fast Food Forward—an advocacy group for local fast food workers—commissioned a report to investigate wage theft among the city's many fast food workers. The report's authors spoke with 500 workers and uncovered that "84 percent of workers surveyed responded that their employer had committed at least one form of wage theft in the past year" and nearly half had experienced at least three different kinds of wage theft.

Examples of theft include overtime violations, like spreading worked hours over multiple weeks to avoid time-and-a-half rates; working through breaks; and not paying employees for work done before and after clocking in. Delivery workers are particularly prone to wage theft, like Noel Scott, a father of one who earns $5.50 an hour as a delivery person for a Domino's in Manhattan. Scott spends an equal amount of time prepping pizza, cleaning, and other non-delivery work as he does on the road, work that by law should pay him the state minimum of $7.25. Additionally, Scott faces hazards that in-store workers avoid. "I've been robbed at gunpoint doing this job," Scott revealed. "I risk everything, and Domino's doesn't even pay me at the minimum. That's outrageous."

Wage loss in certain cases can be almost $200 a week, money workers say would go a long way towards helping their families. Alvin Major, a father of four who works at three different KFCs in Brooklyn, reported being paid $7.25 per hour despite working 68 hours on an average week. "They told me I cannot get overtime because I work at different stores, but that's not true," explained Major. "If I was paid fairly, I would be able to provide more for my family or spend more time with my kids. It's for them that I work so hard."

Theft of money and time is also a common theme, with workers being told not to clock in for their scheduled shift because the store isn't busy. Mother of two Teresa Ramos was told by a manger at a Brooklyn Burger King to clock in 90 minutes after she was schedule to start her shift and was forced to wait in the store for that time without compensation.

Those are just some of the examples that drove the city's workers to rally outside a Bushwick KFC this morning to protest the findings of the report. It's the next in a series of ongoing rallies to support fast food workers and push for unionization. The report also caught the attention of attorney general Eric T. Schneiderman, whom the Times reports will investigate the findings further. “New Yorkers expect companies doing business in our state to follow laws set up to protect working families,” said spokesman Damien LaVera. We reached out to Dominos for comment and will update if we hear back.

Wage Theft Report