According to documents obtained by Our weeklyThe 36-year-old businessman’s lawsuit is deemed “a class action proposed on behalf of all participants.” Love is blind and other non-scripted products”.
In the document, Hartwell, who appeared in the show’s second season, alleges that he and his cast members were only provided with “alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, energy drinks, and mixers.” He claims they also have very little access to “hydrating beverages like water”.
The suit also claims that through “a combination of sleep deprivation, isolation, lack of food, and excessive alcohol consumption, all of which are required, activated, or encouraged.” Love is blind team, it created some “inhuman working conditions and altered mental states for the actors”.
Hartwell’s legal document goes on to note that the contestants did not have access to their phones after arriving on the show, so they were unable to contact their friends and family.
“At times, defendants left cast members for hours without access to phones, food, or any other form of communication with the outside world until they was asked to return to production,” the document continued.
Hartwell also questioned his salary, saying contestants are paid $1,000 per week and up to $8,000 in total for their time on the show. The salary was said to be below minimum wage, as cast members all received “a constant amount” per week, despite the fact that they worked “20 hours a day”.
“Defendant has failed and continues to fail to compensate Class Members and Fit Employees for all hours worked, including minimum wage and overtime, as a result of maintaining the practice of requiring Members to Collective and Staff members strive to work up to twenty (20) hours a day, seven days a week, while paying them a flat rate of $1,000.00 per week of filming,” the document states.
The lawsuit claims that workers are paid $7.14 per hour, “less than half the prevailing minimum wage of $15.00 per hour, less than a third of the minimum overtime rate of 22 $.50 per hour and less than one-quarter of the minimum wage of $30.00 per hour under applicable County and City of Los Angeles minimum wage ordinances”.
In a statement, Hartwell’s attorney, Chantal Payton of Payton Employment Law, PC, Los Angeles, stated that the actors’ limited access to food, water, and the “outside world” is what changed their “decision” in the program.
“They deliberately underpay their members, lack food, water and sleep, drink alcohol, and cut off their access to personal relationships and most of the outside world,” he said. said in a statement in the lawsuit. “This leaves actors hungry for social connection and changes in their emotions and decision-making.”
He also stated that contestants can’t leave the show “until filming is over”, or else they will have to pay “$50,000”, which could make them “scared” of the showrunners.
“Contracts require contestants to agree that if they leave the show before filming is over, they will be fined by paying $50,000 in ‘liquidated damages,’” he continued. . “With that being 50 times what some actors would make over the entire time they were on the job, this certainly has the potential to instill fear in the cast and allow the production to take control. more and more.”
When Hartwell debuted in Love is blind was announced in February, he describes himself as someone who doesn’t “have to think about what to do“. Although there were six couples who got to know each other through the test, Hartwell ended up not getting engaged to anyone on the show.
The Independent affiliated with Netflix and the producer of Kinetic Content.