Last month, the Fort Greene branch of quick Asian chain Rice closed, much to the dismay of its regulars in the area. Today, the Local reports that the reason for the shutter was a labor lawsuit filed by six employees of multiple Rice locations, as the owners needed to open up funds for the $90,000 settlement. It is not stated in the article whether or not the settlement had anything to do with the almost simultaneous shuttering of the chain's Murry Hill location.
In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs alleged that the co-owners of Rice neglected to pay minimum wage, overtime, or spread of hours pay. Their lawyer says, of the cash settlement, "It was way less than what these people owe...They’re getting away with murder, these guys." Meanwhile, Rice founder David Selig likened this suit, and ones like it that are popping up ever more frequently in the restaurant industry, to extortion.
· Employees’ Lawsuit Led to Rice Restaurant Closing [The Local]