Construction workers in Texas have been paid by the company that hired them in the past, but workers have reported they were often told they would be making less than the company had expected, and the pay was often lower than the average wage in the industry, according to a recent Associated Press investigation.
Workers, who usually receive about $16 an hour, were paid roughly $17 an hour last year and are earning less than minimum wage, according the AP investigation.
Workers were told they could expect to earn $10 an hour for the next year and a half, and that they would likely earn a raise, but they were told by supervisors they were making less, and some were told their salaries were being withheld because they were in an injury deferment program, the AP said.
Workers said they often were required to work from home or on the phone to keep the company up-to-date on their schedules.
They said the company would send out a notice when a worker’s home would be full, and they would have to stay at their home for the day, but that was usually not the case.
In a statement, a company spokesman said it was investigating.
More: The company said it will look into the allegations, but said it has a long-standing policy of not paying workers more than the prevailing wage for a job.
The AP said the workers said they were being paid about $20 an hour or less, although workers reported pay was sometimes as much as $30 an hour.
“We do pay our contractors fairly, and we have a long track record of providing good working conditions and respect to our workers,” said Kevin Burt, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Insurance and Insurance Services, the agency that oversees construction, in a statement.
“But it is important to note that we are a private company and contractors are required to meet their obligations to our employees.”