Shannon Liss-Riordan is a working class hero

Disclaimer: I cannot judge if the contract in place between the woman I helped get in touch with Ms. Liss-Riordan and Jan-Pro, a janitorial service franchise company based in Florida (or one of their many agents) was fair, balanced and / or legal. I leave that to the courts to sort through the facts.

When one of the Jan-Pro “franchisees” came in to discuss her case, no one at the Santa Clara University Alexander Center a was equipped to help her – it’s not what we did.

Crunching the numbers, putting together a simple spreadsheet showing hours worked vs. cash earned, I discovered what my client already knew, she was making very little, much less than minimum wage, on some of her janitorial jobs. While we couldn’t help her, I had to do something.

I found Ms. Liss-Riordan and her firm at the time via the internets and packaged the client up for her evaluation. While on a trip to Boston, I made some free time and presented and delivered my client’s dossier (spreadsheets, contracts, memoranda and records meticulously kept by the client) to her firm. I believe my client is one of the lead plaintiffs in the Jan-Pro case mentioned in the article.

There are certain things you do in life that should go for you in the “good guy” or “Job Well Done (JWD)” column. This is one of them. The law sometimes takes a long time, and it’s good to see clinical work I did five years ago come to something.

When presented with a contract to sign which is key to your life’s work or occupation, not knowing a language can be tough. You have to trust that the person you are contracting with has some respect for you and your situation, that they will make sure you are looked after. Fat chance. Unfortunately, the profit motive stifles many of our better angels.








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