Set forth below is a draft of the communication to potential class members (i.e., Store Mnagers, Assistant Store Managers, Parts Sales Managers, Customers Service Representatives and all other non-exempt store employees) as well as anticipated frequently asked questions and responses to the same.
I.Comunication to employees
A.. Communication to Potential Class Members
The communication that will be sent to all potential class members (i.e., Store Managers, Assistant Store Managers, Parts Sales Managers, Customer Service Representatives, and all other non-exempt store employees), or at least to the store managers who received the “newsletter” from the Plaintiffs' attorneys should provide as follows:
As many of you may be aware, AutoZone is the target of a lawsuit filed in California by three former employees: Edgar Martinez, Edwin Cano, and Ronald Carillo. These former employees may seek to solicit employees to support their California lawsuit in which they claim that AutoZone failed to provide employees with meal periods and rest breaks, and failed to reimburse employees for mileage. They also claim that AutoZone improperly computed bonuses for Store Managers. The attorneys for these former employees may also contact you for information. Employees are not obligated in any way to contact Mr. Martinez, Mr. Cano, or Mr. Carrillo, or their attorneys. However should you choose to do so, AutoZone will not retaliate against you in any way. It is AutoZone's position that the lawsuit lacks merit. Nonetheless, it understands that you may have questions about the lawsuit. If so, please feel free to contact AutoZones, Divisional Human Resources Manager.
I. ANTICIPATED FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS TO THE SAME.
Q. What is the lawsuit about?
A. Former Store Managers claim that AutoZone failed to provide employees with meal periods and rest breaks, and failed to reimburse employees for mileage. The also claim that AutoZone improperly computed bonuses for Store Managers.
Q. What is AutoZone's position with respect to the claims raised in the lawsuit?
A. AutoZone believes that the lawsuit lacks merit. It intends to mount a vigorous defense against the lawsuit. For example, as you know the Company's policies clearly provide that employees are to receive rest breaks and meal periods.
Q. When am I supposed to receive a meal period?
A. You are to receive a meal period ofno less than one-half hour, and no more than one hour, for every shift of more than 4 yours unless your entire shift for the day is 6 hours lone. You must clock out for your meal period.
Q. When am I supposed to receive a rest break?
A. Rest breaks are proveded at a rate of 10 minutes for every 4 hours worked. Rest breaks are paid as time worked, so you should not clock out for rest breaks. However, you may be required to remain on the store premises during your rest break such as in the break room. You also need to fill in the break log used at your store.
Q. Does the “Drop/Stop – 30/30” policy mean that I should not take my meal period or rest break when customers are in the store?
A. NO, you must take your meal period and rest breaks even when customers are in the store. “Drop/Stop – 30/30” is about giving customers prompt attention by greeting customers when your are working on the floor. It means that when you are working on the floor, you should drop whatever is in you hands and stop what you are doing to greet a customer before they have walked 30 feet into the store or before they have been in the store for 30 seconds. However, when taking your meal or rest break, you should be in a location off the floor and away from customer view—and you should not be working.
Q. What should I do if I am scheduled to take my meal period or rest break in a few minutes, and several customers suddenly flood the store?
A. You should check with your manager before taking your meal period or rest break, as you may be asked to wait for a few minutes before going on your meal period or rest break.
Q. What should I do if I am actually taking my meal period or rest breat, and a customer comes into the store who needs assistance?
A. You should continue with your meal period or rest break away from customer view, unless specifically instructed otherwise by your manager.
Q. When and how do I receive mileage reimbursement?
A. If you drive your own vehicle to conduct company business, you are entitled to be reimbursed for mileage, instead of gas expenses, as set forth in AutoZone's Expense Reimbursement Policy. Mileage will be paid if it is in excess of your normal daily commute from home to work. For example, it your normal commute is 10 miles, and you are asked to work 30 miles from home, you may be reimbursed for 20 miles.
You will also receive mileage reimbursement if you use your own vehicle to drive from your assigned store location to another store for company business. Travel between your home and normal store location is not reimbursed. To receive reimbursement, you must submit a mileage reimbursement request to your Store Manager or District Manager.
Q. What should I do if I am not receiving my meal periods or rest breaks, or mileage reimbursement?
A. Notify AutoZones, Divisional Human Resources Manager, if you are not receiving your meal periods or rest breaks, or mileage reimbursement. You can also call the AutoZoner Relations Department.
Q. What is the Bonus Program that is involved in this lawsuit?
A. AutoZone has a bonus program in place for Store Managers only. So, if you are not a Store Manager, then you are not eligible for the bonus program that is involved in this lawsuit. AutoZon's bonus program takes into consideration many factors to calculate the bonus payout for Store Managers. This lawsuit claims that some of the factors should not be used to determine the bonus payouts to Store Managers.
Q. What will happen to me if I talk with the attorneys involved in the lawsuit?
A. Nothing will happen to you for talking to those attorneys. If you believe anyone takes any retaliatory conduct towards you please contact AutoZones Human Resources Department at the Divisional Office immediately. You can also call the AutoZoner Relations Department.