Avera McKennan Hospital and University Health Center in Sioux Falls, S.D., is ordered to pay $70,157 in back wages to 487 current and former employees at 12 of its health care facilities.

This order comes following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division that discovered employees were not correctly compensated for work breaks, which is a violation of the overtime provisions under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

"All employees deserve full and fair compensation for all hours worked," says Cynthia Watson, regional administrator of the department's Wage and Hour Division in the Southwest. "Health care workers are some of the lowest paid in the nation. The FLSA provides protections not only to workers but also to employers who depend on the Labor Department to ensure that no company receives an unfair advantage by dodging the law. Similar facilities should take notice and ensure that their policies are in compliance with federal law."

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