'Nursing prone to this kind of violation': Nurse sues rehab center for unpaid meal breaks

A nurse is suing a rehabilitation center for automatically deducting 30-minute meal breaks from her wage despite being routinely interrupted to care for patients, a Faruqi and Faruqi law firm press release said Nov. 1.

Celine Commisiong is a certified nursing assistant and licensed practical nurse at the Parker, Colo.-based Center at Lincoln. The facility required her and others to stay on premise during meal breaks and carry their cell phones at all times, according to the release. She alleges her meal breaks were constantly interrupted to provide patient care. 

Despite telling the facility that she and her coworkers were working during their meal breaks without pay, the facility did not make changes, Ms. Commisiong alleges.

"This lawsuit is a typical example of how automatic meal break deductions can cause wage violations," the release said. "The nursing field may be prone to this kind of violation because nurses often have to attend to patients at a moment's notice, but employees in other fields should consider whether they are receiving uninterrupted meal breaks or being paid for their work on breaks."

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