The City of Indianapolis is temporarily refusing to contract with Protection Plus Inc. after learning that the company had failed to pay proper overtime wages to Security Officers. In June 2022, a federal court ordered Protection Plus to pay more than $440,000 in past due wages, damages, and penalties for violating the Fair Labor Standards Act.
These wage violations included not paying accurate time-and-a-half to Security Officers for working more than 40 hours in a workweek. When Protection Plus did pay overtime, the amounts were incorrect. The Department of Labor (DOL) filed a complaint for these illegal practices in 2022, after investigating the company’s pay rates from 2018 through 2021. As a result, two hundred and fifteen Security Officers who patrol the Indianapolis International Airport, guard local businesses, and provide traffic control have finally been paid the overtime wages they were due.
This was not the first time the company committed these violations. In 2018, Protection Plus paid $98,949 in overtime back wages and damages to 158 employees, and paid $25,000 in civil money penalties because of the willful nature of their violations, according to the DOL.
In response, the City of Indianapolis has implemented a six-month prohibition on city contracts with Protection Plus. Meanwhile, the company continues to employ Security Officers at well-known private businesses and other agencies.
Companies like Protection Plus should be held accountable for violating the law because we want our cities to have responsible contractors, who treat Security Officers with respect and uphold the law.
As President Genie Kastrup of SEIU Local 1 stated, "I think Indianapolis working families deserve better.”