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A neon sign for Dayton Boots in Vancouver. Andrew Chin/Getty Images
A Vancouver store had to pay employees more than $360,000 in damages.
Dayton Boots paid half of their salaries to some employees in the form of gift cards.
Dayton director Eric Hutchingame claimed it was a way to pay for staff equipment.
A Vancouver store has to give workers more than $360,000 after paying half their salary in gift cards.
Dayton Boots has been ordered by Canada's Employment Standards Tribunal to pay its 71 employees a total of C$484,995 ($361,896) following an investigation into its wage practices, with director Eric Hutchingame liable for most of that sum.
Two Dayton employees filed complaints under Section 74 of Canada's Employment Standards Act in October 2020, arguing that the company is deducting half of their wages and replacing them with store gift cards.
An examination of payroll records revealed that as of June 2020, some employees saw deductions in their gross wages, first described as "other deductions," then the "Dayton Card," and finally the "Dayton Gift Card."
During the investigation, Dayton director Hutchingame explained that employees were required to wear Dayton gear while on the job, so he found a way to pay for the boots by incorporating them into the company's pay structure.
He added that his employees had verbally agreed to accept a weekly compensation package worth $600 in cash and an additional $600 in "commercial credit," which was never intended as a wage replacement.
The tribunal first ordered Dayton to pay CAD$610,417 because it requires employees to be paid in Canadian dollars. The amount was reduced on appeal to exclude out-of-province workers.
Hutchingame claimed that 36 of the 71 employees are "brand ambassadors" and are not subject to the same labor laws as other employees. This was denied by the EST because Dayton presented records for all 71 employees as such in its initial investigation.
Dayton did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.
Read the original article on Business Insider

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