Yesterday we told you about Jason Kellner, a former Target manager who says that he was more or less forced to work through his mandatory breaks—and then fired for doing so. This prompted quite a few current and former Target workers to write to us with their own stories of Target employment woe—as every story about Target is wont to do.
A few updated dispatches from within the bullseye, below:
Kellner's Not the Only One
The same thing happened to me yesterday! Think Target is trying to prove some point? Wish I knew how to sue!
I was eating lunch, bored, waiting for 30 minutes to drag by and I turned on the computer, checked my schedule, paycheck, anything to be reading something and getting my mind off thinking about eating more food (diet), I click e-mail and blam HR is standing behind me ordering me to turn the computer off - I'm now "working off the clock" and cannot transfer or get a raise for 18 months because I'm on "corrective action" ! next accusation -fired.
I read the article on Jason Kellner being fired for working off the clock and thought I would share my story. I Last worked at Target as a college student about 9 years ago. I was let go due to a disagreement I had with my manager. Long story kind of short, I was scheduled until 11pm one night. I was done cleaning my section and ready to go to a party. In order to leave, the manager had to walk your section and you had to be told it was ok to clock out. I was told around 10:50 that I could leave. I clocked out. However, I couldn't go anywhere because they locked us in the store out of fear of an employee ducking out before their section was clean. Normally, this is not that big of a deal. On this particular night though, I had a party to go to and didnt feel like sitting around. I asked my manager to unlock the door and was told that he had to check another section real fast. Whatever, no big deal. about 15 minutes later, I found him and asked him again to unlock the door. He stated he would do so in a minute. At this point there are about 15 people waiting to leave. I hung out with some co-workers for a bit, next thing I know it is 11:30. I had been waiting, clocked out for 40 minutes. Irritated, I got on the intercom and told my manager if i was not lot out in 5 minutes, I would leave through the emergency exit. That got his attention. He hurridly (read: waddled briskly) to the front of the store cussing me out for getting on the intercom and for being impatient. I cursed back at him, I was let go. Target has a history of not allowing people to work full time and sending them home early if they get close to it. They also don't seem to mind locking you in a store, off the clock. I bet I would have been let out earlier if I tried to clean a section while off the clock though.
"The Sketchiest Place I Ever Worked"
When I worked at a Reno, NV Target during the Summer of 2004 they
would have me work 10 hour shifts without paying overtime. What they
would do is schedule me to work from 4:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. The catch
was that you couldn't leave until the work was done. So I would clock
in at 4:30 p.m., take a 15 minute break around 6:30 p.m., a 30 minute
lunch around 8 p.m. and then work through the night until the work was
done. Every night they would lock us in the store until 2 – 3 a.m. in
the morning. After the store closed is when the hell would begin, the
managers would get on the P.A. system and yell at us all to hurry for
hours on end. If you finished cleaning your section at 2 a.m. you had
to go and clean another section. No one was allowed to leave the store
until it was ready to open the next morning. There were also a few
times where they made us clock out and sit in the office for more than
half an hour while waiting for one poor girl to finish folding the
women's clothing racks. Those nights we wouldn't leave until 3:30 a.m.
I asked about overtime once and they said that you only got overtime
if you worked more than 8 hours in a single day. Since they started us
so late in the afternoon we would never work more than 8 hours in a
single day because our shifts were being split at midnight.
I had a series of sketchy jobs when I was in college, I once worked as
a detailer at car dealership where the salesmen would hot box the cars
and take ecstasy while playing with power sanders. I also worked at a
newspaper where the editor was also a slum lord, and she would assign
me stories that slandered the city attorney who was trying to
prosecute her for breaking housing laws, and even then Target was
still by far the sketchiest place I've ever worked.
Target Is Cold
When I use to work at Target, they would throw away pounds and pounds and pounds and pounds of food (not even anything that has gone bad). I asked if they could give it to charity and I got written up!
Also the discount is 10% (yuck..thanks for saving me 35 cents)
And sometimes the working conditions were insane. I'm talking cashiering in front of the entrance doors during the middle of a fucking below 10 degree snowstorm. You weren't allowed to wear a jacket unless it was solid red. (I got written up because mine had black trimming).
Thank god I went to college and got a real job.
Thanks to everyone who sent in their stories. If you have more, you can always email me.