Manicurists file class-action lawsuit v Envy Nails owner for underpaid wages

This sounds unpleasant, even though The Daily News hard copy headline is cutesy, Workers on boss: Nail her, and the article by Daniel Beekman is full of the usual puns.

The story: Anita Do, a “tough-as-nails businesswoman,” who owns the Envy Nails chain of nail salons, cheats her manicurists “out of millions of dollars in wages,” says the lawsuit filed in  New York federal court (Manhattan):

Manicurists are fighting back against a tough-as-nails businesswoman who runs her mani-pedi empire with an iron fist.

The manicurists, who filed an amended class-action complaint last month in Manhattan Federal Court, claim Anna Do has cheated hundreds of workers out of millions of dollars in wages.

They want customers to know that the Envy Nails owner allegedly flouts the law by paying her employees as little as $5 a day and keeps them under her thumb by spying on them from her home via surveillance cameras in her more than 50 nail salons in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn and the Bronx.

“The average I made during the winter was $80 a week,” Minerva Lopez, who quit her job with Envy Nails in December 2012, said through a Spanish interpreter. “Sometimes I didn’t have enough money to eat. I would drink a coffee in the morning and at night eat something very small — a can of tuna or some rice.”

It’s an ugly situation, emphasized by the last three paragraphs:

“The people who get their nails done, they have no idea,” Lopez [one of the plaintiffs] said. “But they should know that most people who work in nail salons are mistreated and abused.”

Sharell Everett, 18, patronizes an Envy Nails salon in East Harlem.

“The women always look unhappy,” she said. “You can tell something is wrong.”

I’d say so.

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