The Olsen twins are being sued by their unpaid interns for having to work ridiculously long hours with no pay.
A class-action lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court accuses Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen of working their past and present interns at their licensing and manufacturing company, Dualstar Entertainment Group, long, grueling hours with no pay.
Shahista Lalani, one of the Olsen twin’s former interns and a graduate from the Parsons School of Design, said she was worked like a dog and didn’t receive a dime for her time, the New York Daily News reports. The lawsuit claims Lalani clocked 50 hours a week between May, 2012, and September, 2012, with the company as an unpaid intern. According to court documents, Shahista’s duties included “inputting data into spreadsheets, making tech sheets, running personal errands for paid employees, organizing materials, cleaning, photocopying and sewing.”
Shahista reportedly worked in Manhattan under the head technical designer for the Olsens’ fashion label, The Row. She referred to her boss as “demanding,” and said she was doing the workload of three interns.
“She was very demanding,” Lalani recalled to Page Six. “I was doing the work of three interns. I was talking to her all day, all night. E-mails at nighttime for the next day, like 10 p.m. at night.”
Lalani said she even had to be rushed to the hospital after experiencing severe dehydration from over exerting herself at her job.
“It was like 100 degrees outside. I’d just be sweating to death. I probably carried like 50 pounds worth of trench coats,” she said. “The head technical designer was like, ‘Go get my Advil. I need this and this because I’m feeling sick and I have this meeting,’ ” Lalani said.
“When we weren’t doing something, they’d be like, ‘Organize the buttons in the back by color code.’ You’re cleaning. You don’t get a set 15-minute break. You just go with their crazy flow. You just [got] caught up in the pressure.
You’re like an employee, except you’re not getting paid. They’re kind of mean to you. Other interns have cried. I’d see a lot of kids crying doing coffee runs, photocopying stuff.”
The suit claims that the interns were doing the work of their paid colleagues, but were not receiving any compensation, not even college credit hours. It also claims that they should have been paid the minimum wage plus overtime, just like the others who were receiving paychecks.
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[Photo by Larry Busacca / Getty Images]