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Workers prevail in years-long fight to hold employer accountable for wage theft and disability discrimination

September 30, 2022

After a five-year fight in the courts, transportation dispatcher Whitney Davis and assisted living care providers Stephanie Crawford, LaShonda Dixon, and Octavia Parker have achieved a very favorable settlement in the wage theft and disability discrimination case of Davis, et al. v. Uhh Wee, We Care Inc., et al. The case concerned the employment practices of Edwina Murray, who operated three assisted living facilities in Baltimore City, along with a transportation company. Ms. Davis contacted the Public Justice Center when Ms. Murray had not paid her anything for weeks and then fired her for a disability with no connection to her ability to do her job. We also learned that care workers at the assisted living facilities were misclassified as independent contractors, paid far less than minimum wage (sometimes as little as $3.13 per hour), and never paid overtime wages.

We sued the employer for wage theft and wrongful termination, with Ms. Davis as lead plaintiff, in February 2017. Ms. Murray repeatedly attempted to dodge responsibility for paying workers fully and fairly, including failing to respond to notice of the lawsuit, providing falsified time records during discovery, failing to produce court-required records of employees, appealing the default judgment in favor of our clients, and refusing to pay after the court rejected her appeal. With the help of Louis Ebert of Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, we filed a successful involuntary bankruptcy petition that finally led Murray to settle for an amount close to the unpaid wages and damages owed to the workers, including the compensatory and punitive damages for wrongful termination owed to Ms. Davis; the amount of the settlement is confidential under the agreement. Ms. Davis, Ms. Crawford, Ms. Dixon, and Ms. Parker finally received their checks in July 2022.

PJC attorneys David Rodwin and Tyra Robinson represented the workers in the case.