- Business and Employment
Cable Contractors Fight Back
Throughout the country unfair labor practices law suits are popping up everywhere. Same is true in central Florida. In the Tampa Bay area, cable contractors decided to fight back as well. I myself are one of them. Due to our economic struggle, these companies feel that they can bully their "employees" around. For fear they won't find other work in today's job market. Problem is, the "employees" were misclassified as contractors. When in actuality they definitely were not. And are in fact entitled to benefits and overtime pay. There is currently a case being filed against Knight Enterprises and Brighthouse Networks for these issues. Knight Enterprises higher-ups are scrambling to get affairs in order. By doing things like tearing down the training facility and trying to get installers to go on camera to say they are contractors of their own free will and choose to do so. Which just further proves how shady of an operation they have going on there.
I was set an example of because of my outspoken nature. Please, I love A good fight. They would no longer allow me to work there as a technician after I lost my drivers license. Which didn't prevent me from doing my duties. Before they came up with a new rule that every technician had to be able to be a stand alone tech due to "liability issues", I was able to team up with other techs. Until I spoke up in a meeting about how unfair we were being treated and asking for reasons why they decided to cut our pay by about a third. Or why they were charging us back a hundred dollars every time they decided that one of our jobs didn't completely meet quality control standards. We had no chances to dispute the claims or repair them ourselves. Instead they just took our money out of our paychecks and pretty much told us that if we didn't like it that we could quit. They would also charge us three to five times more for issued equipment that got lost than they would charge the customers for the same equipment. That would be deducted from our checks as well. With no option to dispute. For instance, the same high definition digital video recorder that would cost a cable subscriber $600, we would be charged $2500. Or a high speed cable modem, their cost is $55 while ours was $500.
So it seems some straw finally broke that camels back and here we are battling it out with lawyers. Which I'm not a big fan of. I'd much rather settle it with a pair of boxing gloves and a hefty compensation from the owner when I beat him like he stole something. Because he has been for years. But we are not putting up with it anymore. By the time its said and done, he could stand to lose upwards of $5 million. Not to mention tarnishing their reputations quite a bit. So I urge any wrongfully let go or mistreated technician who worked for the pinellas county branch in the last few years, to opt-in on this suit. What do you have to lose?