BREINIGSVILLE, Pa. - Amazon workers at the Breinigsville warehouse - and other Amazon facilities around the country - have been required for years to have their bags searched after their shifts in mandatory security screenings.
In 2013, two workers at the Breinigsville warehouse filed a lawsuit against Amazon, saying they didn't think it was fair that they had to clock out before those screenings. They wanted to be compensated for the time they spent standing in line waiting and having their bags searched.
The class action lawsuit went all the way up to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which was split in its decision, but ultimately ruled in favor of the workers.
The court's majority opinion was that workers are required to be paid under the state's Minimum Wage Act, which says "hours worked" includes "any time when an employee is required by the employer to be on the premises of the employer."
The court found that workers don't have to be actually doing work that just relates to their job title, in order to get paid.
The state Supreme Court's decision isn't just a win for Amazon employees; the ruling applies to any worker in Pennsylvania who is waiting in line for security screenings mandated by their employer.
From now on, if employers in Pennsylvania want to search their employees' things, they'll have to pay them while they do it.