The former owners of six assisted living facilities in the District will pay over $1.5 million for failing to fully pay their front-line health care workers during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, the D.C. attorney general’s office said Tuesday.

Attorney General Brian Schwalb said Azure Health Services violated the city’s minimum wage law by requiring its employees to work 24-hour shifts for 14 consecutive days while paying them for 18 hours daily.

“Azure employees risked their lives to care for our city’s most vulnerable residents during a global health crisis,” Schwalb said in a news release, WTOP reported. “Despite profiting by requiring its employees to work 24-hour shifts, Azure failed to pay wages its hardworking employees had rightfully earned and were legally owed.”

The attorney general’s office started investigating Azure’s practices in late 2021 after getting complaints from its workers. The agency then filed a lawsuit against the company in December 2021.

Specifics of the settlement include $1.51 million to be paid with $1.31 million going to the affected workers and $200,000 in penalties owed to the D.C. government for violating the minimum wage law.

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