Oregon judge in bakery lawsuit rules against double overtime


Oregon law limits manufacturing workers to a 13-hour work day, and entitles them to overtime pay when they work more than 10 hours in a day. A separate law requires overtime pay for all hourly workers after 40 hours in a week.

What happens when manufacturing workers work both daily and weekly overtime? Until last year, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) advised their employers to calculate daily and weekly overtime and pay whichever was greater. Now it says they should pay the overtime premium twice once a manufacturing worker has worked more than 40 hours in a week and 10 hours in a day— in accord with a lawsuit filed last August by non-profit Northwest Workers Justice Project.

The suit is on behalf of seven current and former workers at Portland Specialty Baking, a Gresham industrial bakery that busted a union campaign last year. About 175 mostly immigrant workers work long hours for around $10 an hour making baked goods for Starbucks and Walmart.

But on March 9, a Multnomah County Circuit Court Judge rejected the plaintiffs’ argument that double overtime must be paid after both the 40-hour and 10-hour limits. The lawsuit will still go forward on other issues, including whether the bakery worked workers more than 13 hours – and failed to pay daily overtime – when a 24-hour period included work on two consecutive work days.


  1. Hopefully the rejected verdict for the plaintiffs’ argument that double overtime must be paid after both the 40-hour and 10-hour limits will seek an appeal. The corporate agenda is 12 hour work days, pure and simple. Allows employers to cover a 24 hour window with less shifts, less employees. We have gone from 8 hours/day, 40 hours/week to 10 hours/day 4days/week and mandatory overtime, to their new agenda, 12 hours/day and 4 days a week with no deterent for employers to reduce prolonged schedules. BOLI was correct in changing the law, these prolonged schedules are not safe for the employee, their co-workers, or the industries/customers they serve.


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