Designer Alexander Wang, who has generally maintained a squeaky clean track record, has been slapped with a $450 million class-action suit reportedly filed by 30 former employees last month. The lawsuit, which consists of nine charges valued at $50 million each, include violations to the labor law and breach of contract.
According to a New York Post article, Wang’s ex-employees claim that they have been “forced to work 16 hours a day or longer” without overtime pay, among others. The harsh environment was also raised, revealing that they work in a “suffocating” and “windowless” room. One of the complainants, Wenyu Lu, alleged that they have suffered from various illnesses and injuries because of these conditions. Fired on February 16 following his complaints on the working conditions, Lu also detailed an instance when Wang ordered a normally 12-hour job to be completed in four hours.
A WWD article reveals that through a spokesperson, Wang denies such allegations. “The company takes its obligations to comply with the law very seriously, including the relevant wage and hour regulations, the payment of overtime to eligible employees and having a safe working environment for all of our employees. We will vehemently defend any allegations to the contrary.”
Amid the hullabaloo this has created, the designer’s camp holds that the legal papers still haven’t been served to them.