Caregivers have filed a lawsuit in Orange County against the Xin Xi Du Month Center, a Chinese tourism center, because they claim that they were being paid less than minimum wage and they were forced to work more than 70 hours a week while not being paid overtime. The caregivers allege that they were hired to care for pregnant Chinese woman that travel to the United States to give birth on American soil so that their babies will have U.S. citizenship. According to Sam Wu, an attorney who is representing the caregivers, the tourism center would organize transportation, housing, medical care, and food service trips until the women gave birth. Wu claims that some workers were tricked into signing leases for apartments so that the pregnant woman could stay there until they gave birth and then the workers were stuck with the bills when the company stopped paying for the rent. Wu stated:
The employees are not highly educated, and they don’t speak English and the defendants were able to coerce them into signing the lease so their business would be more difficult to track. They try to milk as much money out of it as they can.
U.S. citizenship is apparently highly valued by Chinese middle class people because it provides things such as easier access to prestige Universities and a chance for the parents to apply for a green card after their child has turned 21 years old. It is unknown if the Xin Xi Du Month Center is still operating, but hopefully everything works out for the workers suing the tourism center and they are able to get the money they are owed.
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