Grit Nation

Wage Theft - The Blusky Files

October 03, 2021 Season 3 Episode 2
Grit Nation
Wage Theft - The Blusky Files
Show Notes

Use the link below to see the NBC Nightly News Story.

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/hidden-scourge-wage-theft-when-higher-profits-come-out-workers-n1272238

This episode of Stolen begins in the early morning of August 2020, when a storm system develops on the barren plains of the Nebraska and South Dakota border. 

Known as a Derecho, Spanish for straight, these type’s of storms are powerful, fast-moving systems that can generate hurricane force winds, and create tornados, heavy rains, and flash flooding. 

Cedar Rapids, Iowa was one of the hardest hit areas. 

There the storm caused power outages, gas leaks and extensive wind and water damage to residences, buildings, and schools.

Among the many businesses that suffered significant damage was a senior living community just a few miles from downtown called Cottage Grove Place.

Pablo Ramirez was subcontracted by Blusky, a restoration and repair company based out of Denver, Colorado to supply the manpower to do the repairs.

Pablo hired  out of state workers agreed to be paid a flat wage that depended on their experience. 

Additionally, Pablo promised to pay his workers weekly, reimburse their travel expenses and arrange for their lodging while working in Iowa. 

It sounded like a sweet deal and as the crew headed north, their spirits were high. 

Steady work and a place to stay. What could be better? 

Little did they know as they began their long drive north they were headed into a Derecho all their own. 

Today we investigate just what went wrong in Cedar Rapids 

and how the 6 Blusky employees from Texas found themselves without food, lodging or even the money to get home.

To help me tell this story I spoke with Royce Peterson the carpenter’s union, lead business representative in Eastern Iowa.

Joining us on the call were Public Affairs Director Richard Kajayski and Burt Johnson, General Counsel from the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters.

The Show Notes

Join the Grit Nation MVP Team
https://mailchi.mp/c28da31260b8/grit-nation-podcast-sign-up-page

Follow Grit Nation on Instagram
 
https://www.instagram.com/gritnationpodcast/

Grit Nation YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCy-gSacdByjCCec1KeWDJgw

Email comments or suggestions to:
joe@gritnationpodcast.com

Grit Nation is a proud member of the Labor Radio Podcast Network
https://www.laborradionetwork.org/ 

NW Carpenters Union
United Brotherhood of Carpenters, Regional Council in the Pacific NW 6 states + 29k members strong!!

The Grit Nation MVP Team
Join The Nation and help spread the word on how unions are building lives + careers to be proud of.

Union Home Plus
Union Home Plus helps union members save money when they buy, sell, or finance their home.