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星期一, 3月 14, 2016

麥小瓊獲華人前進會工人正義獎


Cyndi Mark Recognized for Longtime Dedication to the Chinese Labor Community

            BOSTON – In recognition of her commitment to advocating for the rights of low-income and immigrant workers, the Chinese Progressive Association (CPA) awarded Attorney General Maura Healey’s Fair Labor Chief Cynthia Mark with its Worker Justice Award last Friday.

            Mark, a Cambridge resident, was honored at the CPA’s 2016 Year of the Monkey Banquet for devoting her professional career to advocating for social justice.

“Our office is committed to making sure the rights of workers in Massachusetts are protected and we are proud to have Cyndi at the helm of our Fair Labor Division,” said AG Healey. “We congratulate her on receiving this honor from the CPA in recognition of her dedication and commitment to workers and their families across this state.”

            “Cyndi Mark is not a stranger to our community. For twenty years, she has been the workers’ lawyer in the Chinese community,” said CPA Co-Director Karen Chen. “She has probably either represented you on a case or you have referred someone to her. She has worked on the day-to-day details of hundreds of cases as well as landmark cases to create systematic change. And we at CPA are very proud to say that Cyndi’s career for social justice started right here.”

AG Healey appointed Mark to serve as head of her office’s Fair Labor Division in September 2015.

            The AG’s Fair Labor Division is responsible for enforcing the laws regulating the payment of wages, including prevailing wage, minimum wage and overtime laws.

Under Mark’s leadership, the Fair Labor Division has pursued several cases that reflect the AG’s Office’s commitment to combatting wage theft and protecting vulnerable workers.

In November 2015, the AG’s Office cited a Peabody convenience store and its owner more than $43,000 for failing to properly compensate an employee who was working more than 100 hours a week and provided temporary housing accommodations in a broken walk-in cooler. In December 2015, a Dorchester grocery store and its owner agreed to pay more than $100,000 after the AG’s Office learned through an investigation that the market failed to pay seven of its employees the required minimum wage and overtime rate.

Prior to her appointment in the AG’s Office, Mark worked for the last 10 years as the managing attorney of the Asian Outreach Unit of Greater Boston Legal Services, representing Asian immigrant clients with multiple barriers to accessing the legal system.

            Mark has successfully litigated complex employment cases under the Massachusetts Wage Act and Fair Labor Standards Act including a case that resulted in a $950,000 wage theft settlement with Super 88 Market that changed employment practices at Chinese supermarkets throughout the region.

Mark also helped garment workers secure job training opportunities as Boston’s factories were closing. She later worked as an instructor in one of Greater Boston’s first Chinese bilingual job training programs. She helped the CPA develop its Workers Center and Adult Education Program as pathways for immigrant workers to secure their rights. Mark is a graduate of Tufts University and Northeastern University School of Law.

            In 2005, Mark represented elderly and immigrant voters and community organizations in a case that led to Boston implementing bilingual ballots for Vietnamese and Chinese voters.  In 2014, Mark was honored as a recipient of the Top Women in Law award by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.