The 60-plus Employees at the Carrabba's Italian Grill in the Staten Island Mall say they were "ambushed" by a Sunday-morning meeting telling them they were out of a job...effective in ten minutes.

The "coldhearted" firings came after management requested an all-staff meeting at 10 a.m. on Sunday. “The regional proprietor had said to us that, ‘There’s no nice way to say this, but we’re closing down,’” said former full-time employee Marissa Grillo. “Apparently, the managers knew about it for a couple of months now." A representative from OSI restaurants, which owns Carrabba's, Bonefish Grill, and Outback Steakhouse, told us in a statement that "the company paid all of the employees a two week severance, and is currently helping to facilitate placement with the Outback Steakhouse located next door and the new Bonefish Grill that will open at the Carrabba’s Staten Island site in 2012."

But Grillo says that no one's been transfered, and that severance pay was capped at $300. Another employee, Theresa Carbonara, said that the restaurant witheld pay for some employees "in retaliation" for going to the media with the story and refused to pay up until authorities got involved. “We read through some laws," she said, "and apparently it’s mandated that full-time employees are supposed to be told 90 days in advance if something like this is to happen, and it is a known fact that the managers did know for three months." OSI would not respond to our questions about how much the managers knew or how far ahead of time they were informed, saying only "This is a prudent business decision, as this location is no longer feasible for Carrabba’s." It's a crap position for both the laid-off workers and anyone craving pasta weesie, though Staten Islanders may want to check out this grandma-run Italian joint instead.