Equinox employees have been granted a green light to proceed with three class action suits
A California judge has given Equinox employees permission to proceed with three class action lawsuits. The class action lawsuits allege that the luxury fitness club violated wage and labor laws. More than 9,000 Equinox employees in California could be affected.
The Equinox class actions were certified by William H. Orrick, a federal judge in California.
The plaintiffs claim that they were forced to perform off-the-clock tasks such as programming fitness programs, communicating with club clients outside of classes, and contacting fitness client leads. These duties, according to the plaintiffs, were uncompensated.
Equinox fitness trainers and instructors also expressed dissatisfaction with a company policy that they claim required teaching “four, one-hour training sessions in a row without being able to take a rest break.” In California, a company must provide employees with a 10-minute paid break during every four hours worked.
Another complaint claims that the luxury fitness club discouraged employees from recording their time spent performing off-the-clock work, resulting in inaccurate time-keeping records. Instead of paying employees by the hour, the luxury gym averaged their pay, say the plaintiffs, which violates the labor law in California.
Lastly, Equinox allegedly failed to provide employees with 30-minute lunch breaks or pay out bonuses as promised.
Claims of unhappy and overworked Equinox employees have plagued the fitness club for a number of years.
In /personaltraining, a subreddit, a NY-based employee vented their frustrations. “This company has wreaked havoc on my mental health. I showed up to work after my aunt died because of floor coverage. I showed up after my grandma had a stroke because of floor coverage. I was working 6 days a week, coming in 2x a day and still being sat down for talks because my numbers aren’t good enough. My coworkers are working 7 days a week. Every time I turn around we’re being asked how badly we want to be successful there. If we’re willing to do what it takes. This company drains you of everything you have because if you’re not willing to live and breathe Equinox you don’t want it bad enough. Currently job searching,” the poster shared.
“Depending on the tier of your trainer, they’re getting PENNIES of what you’re spending. The only real money there is if you hit your bonuses by hitting huge numbers. On a $120 tier 2 session a tier 2 trainer makes $31. On a $130 session a tier 3 trainer makes $36. My club currently has 4/16 trainers hitting full time numbers. They are the only ones making decent money,” the poster continued.
In 2014, Equinox paid $2.9 million to settle allegations of overtime wages and meal break violations in California.
Courtney Rehfeldt has worked in the broadcasting media industry since 2007 and has freelanced since 2012. Her work has been featured in Age of Awareness, Times Beacon Record, The New York Times, and she has an upcoming piece in Slate. She studied yoga & meditation under Beryl Bender Birch at The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute. She enjoys hiking, being outdoors, and is an avid reader. Courtney has a BA in Media & Communications studies.