In perhaps the most bizarre and shocking news to come out of this fashion month, beloved New York fashion designer Alexander Wang has been hit with a $50 million labor lawsuit, the Daily News and New York Post are reporting.
Wenyu Lu, a 56-year-old Wang employee from Queens, was allegedly being forced to work 84-hour weeks in Wang's Chinatown studio, which the Daily News describes as a "Broadway sweatshop," and once passed out after working a 25-hour day. Wenyu Lu's lawyer told the paper he hopes to get more employees to sign on to file a class action lawsuit against the company.
The Post's report, however, says Wang is being charged by "30 workers," including Lu, all of whom claim they were "forced to work 16 hours a day or longer — without overtime — in a suffocating, windowless, 200-square-foot room." Lu also says he was hospitalized for several days after passing out and that the company threatened to fire him if he didn't follow orders, one of which was to “'knit and perfect'” a pair of leather trousers in four hours — a job that normally takes 12 hours." The Post reports that Lu was ultimately fired on February 16.
Alexander Wang's camp did not provide any comment for either story. We have reached out to them and will report back once we know more.