Sign up For DC 37 News


Public Employee Press

DC 37 has your back

$5000 overtime victory

Lamar Walker of Local 768 at the Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The union resolved a grievance that paid a Local 768 Clinical Care Coordinator nearly $5,000 for overtime that he worked at the Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene.

“I’m happy with the outcome,” said Lamar Walker. “My supervisor was supportive and worked with me but I don’t think I would have been as successful in getting paid time-and-a-half for the hours I worked without help from my union.”

Walker is a two-year employee of the Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene. His job is to connect patients and parolees with mental health issues to the network of support services they need to live healthy and stable lives and avoid setbacks like hospital readmission and recidivism.

Last July at his supervisor’s request, Walker began working longer hours. But when he submitted his timesheets the codes for approved overtime were expired.

Union persisted

“Because payroll’s codes are programmed to expire, no one could figure out how to resubmit Walker’s timesheets and override payroll’s coding system so he could be paid properly, so we filed a grievance,” said Grievance Rep Anthony Scruggs, who is also Local 768’s executive vice president.

After a while management tried to make amends and offered Walker a solution: They would give him straight comp time for the overtime hours he worked.

Walker said, “Straight time is not the same. I was counting on getting my overtime as time-and-a-half payment in cash.” He could not accept anything less.

“The union persisted, insisting that DOHMH stick to the citywide contract regarding overtime pay for our members who work more than 40 hours a week,” said President Fitz Reid. “We made sure Mr. Walker received his overtime rate of time-and-a-half in cash, not comp time.”

Eventually DOHMH corrected the payroll coding glitch and in January Walker, a licensed social worker, received a check for almost $5,000. He said, “At times it was a little frustrating but I’m glad the union was beside me to finally work this out.”

“If anyone believes they are being denied overtime pay for hours worked beyond their 40-hour workweek, they should contact the union immediately,” said Reid.