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Question about travel time during breaks Kentucky

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  • Question about travel time during breaks Kentucky

    We recently switched from being a (employer #1) warehouse to an (employer #2) warehouse. The new policy is that, you cannot leave your station till break time, and your expected back 15 mins from when you leave, and 30 mins for lunch. Well, some of us have a 1.5-3 min walk to the breakroom/punch out clock. So for those of us who are further away, we are missing out on 3-6 mins of our break. Is that legal? Especially the lunch period. We work in Kentucky, and I always thought walking to and from the break area didnt count as part of your break/lunch
    Last edited by cbg; 01-26-2013, 11:48 AM.

  • #2
    Based on what you have said, legal under federal law (FLSA). Your state is not my state, so I will defer a KY specific answer (if any) to someone else.
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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    • #3
      I can find nothing in the KY statutes that says that breaks do not begin until you reach the break room.
      The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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      • #4
        I know zip about KY but the feds do not care if you get a break at all. They do require that short breaks be paid if given.

        My understanding is that maybe no state requires 15 minute breaks. Many states do not require breaks at all. In those states whose break rules I am actually familar with, what you describe is legal. You can make an argument that you are being functionally treated differerent then everyone else, but there is no universal non-discrimination rules. Discrimination is in fact perfectly legal most of the time. There is nothing that says everyone has to be treated exactly the same at work. Now Could this some how be illegal? Sure. Lets call the far warehouse Siberia, and lets assume that the boss requires only woman to work there. We now have a possible Disparate Treatment situation effecting a Title VII protected class. But working in Siberia all by itself is not legally protected. There is no generic "all employees must have an equally enjoyable work experience" law. As long the break you are getting meets the KY requirements, assuming that KY actually has requirements, then no laws are broken. What you dscribe would be legal in CA which has tough laws in this area.
        "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
        Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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        • #5
          KY has similar laws to CA. Not quite as tight, but similar.

          Just so the poster knows, I reviewed the actual statutes before posting. The statute makes no mention of "travel time" or anything of the sort. It requires 10 minute breaks for every four hours worked, and a "reasonable" time for a meal break, for which 30 minutes is considered sufficient. Nowhere does the statute address a break room, travel to it, or anything related to it.
          The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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          • #6
            If the employee is not getting a net break of 10 minutes, I would suggest that they would have a weak argument at that point. But it is entirely up to KY on how to react to that argument. Almost no one works in the break room, and I cannot see any state arguing that everyone must have a complete 10 minute break exclusive of travel time. If we are talking about the employee always getting a net 5 minute break, that would have a lot more legs then the employee always getting a net 9 minute break (with the employer arguing that the travel time claim is overstated). But since KY law says 10 minutes, the chances that KY cares about 15 minutes per se is non-existent.
            Last edited by DAW; 01-26-2013, 01:00 PM.
            "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
            Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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            • #7
              I would not argue with that.
              The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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              • #8
                Me either.....
                Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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