It turns out it’s not such a “good life” for employees at a popular Canadian fitness chain.
As The Toronto Star reports, GoodLife Fitness is in some hot water.
According to a new $60 million class-action lawsuit, the gym chain has “systematically failed” to properly compensate thousands of employees across Ontario for their hours of work and overtime.
The suit, filed by well-known labour law firm Goldblatt Partners, makes numerous allegations against GoodLife claims that the fitness giant’s policies “fail to appropriately compensate” its staff and create “an unlawful barrier to payment of overtime.”
The suit also claims that the company frequently fails to compensate its employees for certain types of work. This includes class prep and the recruitment of new clients.
“These are precarious workers, these are young workers, these are in many cases part-time workers, workers who face precarious schedules,” said Josh Mandryk, co-counsel on the case, according to The Toronto Star. “It’s really crucial for workers in these situations who face challenges standing up to these sorts of policies alone to come together and defend that principle that they should be paid for all their hours of work.”
The suit represents any non-unionized employee past or present who has worked at the gym since 2014. This figure is believed to be in the thousands.
In its statement of claim, it’s argued that GoodLife prevented workers from accurately documenting and claiming all of their hours worked because their electronic time sheets “are altered by managers and club administrators” when they exceed the overtime threshold of 44 hours per week.
As The Star reports, employees can be disciplined by GoodLife for working unauthorized overtime. At the same time, however, they must also maintain an average of 96 personal training hours with clients each month. Reaching that quota involves countless hours “prospecting” new clients.
They are “not compensated for all of these hours,” the claim alleges.
Furthermore, trainers are also required to prepare for classes and clock hours on mandatory paperwork, none of which is compensated, according to the lawsuit.
In order to proceed with the case, the class action must first be certified in court. According to The Star, that hearing will take place next year.
As for GoodLife, in a statement to the Star, a spokesperson for the company said a fair and supportive work environment was a “key priority” for the company.
“We disagree with the allegations outlined in this claim. We are currently in the process of reviewing and assessing the allegations so that we may defend ourselves,” the statement said.