Alexander Wang's fashion label filed court papers on Wednesday in which it once again denied that it ever operated a sweatshop. The documents called the people suing the company for poor working conditions "two disgruntled former employees with axes to grind."
In the papers, lawyers for Wang said the only reason Wenyu Lu and Flor Durante filed suit against the company in March was to "exact a substantial settlement from the defendants, and that the two have mischaracterized their former workplace as a hovel, while attempting to portray defendants as 'sweatshop owners.'"
But according to the defense, nothing could be further from the truth. Wang's lawyers say the company's workspace at 386 Broadway in New York — which Lu described as a windowless room — is in reality a "modern, brightly lit studio with high ceilings and large windows." The papers say that Lu and Durante, who both worked as sewers, were paid $25 and $22 per hour, respectively.
The papers said Wang employees were allowed to take breaks during the workday and were eligible for a wide variety of benefits, including paid vacation and medical and dental insurance. Additionally, the papers emphasize that the designer and all of the defendants named in the suit "have complied with all applicable wage and hour and leave laws, and there is no basis whatsoever for plaintiffs' frivolous and entirely unsupportable accusations that defendants have harassed them or discriminated against them on the basis of their race, or on any other protected basis."
Lu filed the original lawsuit in March, when he claimed that he had been forced to work 25 hours without taking a break when he worked for Wang. The other plaintiff, who has been identified as both Flor Durante and Flor Duarte, claimed she was fired after applying for worker's compensation.
Photo: Alexander Wang attends a party hosted by Lacoste during Coachella.