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Lawsuit Filed Against Nail Salon

The Asian Law Caucus has filed a class action lawsuit against Natalie Salon for unlawful practices.

A class action lawsuit was filed in San Mateo County Superior Court Tuesday against a popular nail salon chain accused of wage theft and other violations against their employees, an attorney with the Asian Law Caucus said today.

, a chain with locations in Redwood City, San Mateo, Palo Alto, Los Gatos and Menlo Park, is being sued by four current and former employees with the assistance of the San Francisco-based Asian Law Caucus, which held a news conference today to announce the lawsuit.

"On behalf of all former and current employees, we're seeking to end unlawful business practices" at the salons, said Winnie Kao, staff attorney at the Asian Law Caucus.

Vicky Tran, who worked at various Natalie Salons for about five years, said she often worked for more than 10 hours a day, but never got paid overtime and often had to delay her lunch meal until very late in the day.

"It's wrong to treat the employees that way," Tran said.

Natalie Salon management were not immediately available for comment on the lawsuit.

Kao said the Asian Law Caucus got involved in the case after one of the employees came to a free clinic the group held and told them about the alleged violations.

She said the Asian Law Caucus has kept a watchful eye on the nail
salon industry, which has seen the number of salons triple in the U.S. in the past decade, changing the business "from a luxury service to a relatively inexpensive indulgence."

Of the roughly 96,000 licensed nail salon workers in California,
it is estimated that more than half are Vietnamese, and the vast majority are women who are recent immigrants with limited English proficiency and lack of knowledge about their rights.

Kao said those factors lead to many workers who are too scared to come forward and report possible misdeeds by employers.

"Beauty shouldn't come at the expense of workers' rights," she said.

The lawsuit seeks reimbursement for all employees at the salons who may have lost wages over the past four years and seeks to stop the allegedly unlawful practices at the salons, Kao said.

 

--Bay City News

Amata Frerrari February 28, 2013 at 09:35 AM
I have been to Natalie Salon for many years and happened to get to know the owners well. They were immigrants themselves but they work hard and always strive to do their best for their employees. The employees love to work at their shop. However, a few of them turned their back against the owner due to jealousy. These few individuals also stole customers from the Salon and started a new nail shop across from Natalie Salon in Redwood City.
residentwithopinions February 28, 2013 at 03:23 PM
Yeah because they weren't getting paid! The "new salmon across the street" does a much better job, nicer chairs and remember you name. I had been going to Natalie's for years but always felt rushed and like they didn't care. The sister who one across the street are running an amazing business and if women chose to go there instead good for them! That is capitalism. Now there is going to be another nail salon opening a few blocks away across from Chipotle, so let the best customer service win!
residentwithopinions February 28, 2013 at 03:24 PM
Ahh spell check "new salon..,btw I wonder what the status is of this lawsuit at Natalie's, it's been almost 2 years
Karen March 01, 2013 at 06:02 AM
Update on the lawsuit: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Peninsula-nail-salons-settle-with-workers-4314456.php

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