The issue is whether the traveling time that miners take to get to the face of the mine counts as working time under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The State of Confusion should adopt the majority’s opinion and hold travel time as work time. This position held that because the workers were under employer supervision, physical exertion was involved because they are performing a service, and the worker is doing this work to benefit the employer travel time should count as worktime. Lunch time does not count as worktime because the employee is not supervised and it is for their benefit, by contrast travel time is worktime because there is supervision, it is not the employees own time, and it is for the benefit of the employer. Since these factors exist in the State of Confusion, travel time should be counted as worktime.
The principal argument in favor of classifying travel time as work time is that the time was spent on the employer’s premises. In Sunshine Mining Co. v. Carver (1941), the court affirms that during this time the employee is under the control, direction and supervision of the employer, so they should be getting paid for it. The employee voluntarily offers themselves to the employer at a specific time. The employer decides the place of work and the distance to get to this destination may be short or long. Therefore, such travel time between the portal and the place of work should be considered worktime.
Another argument is that the employers are active during the travel time. In Tennessee Coal, Iron & R. Co. v. Muscoda Local No. 123, 135 F.2d 320 (1943), the court held that the employers “exacted mental and physical exertion from the employees under conditions both hazardou...
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...on in the iron and coal mining industries, in the courts and in other cases. The Fair Labor Standards Act does not define “worktime” or “work”, so the Act may apply to every industry. Work is not “worktime” is not defined so that there is less confusion between the employers and the employees. Work is different in every industry, so classifying something that is not in every industry would cause a lot of problems
The final argument is that counting travel time as work time will bankrupt the employers. In Tennessee Coal, it is argued that the coal mine will shut down because they will lose money. There will be outrageous results if travel time is counted as work time. Everyone would lose a lot of money, the coal mine, its partners and the community. This would cause a lot of overtime wages. Such a rule would make employers pay more, and they cannot afford to pay extra.
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