I agree with Ms. Grant. Seek a consultation with an attorney experienced in employment law without delay.
Yes. It sounds like a violation, although it would be worth reviewing the issue thoroughly with an attorney experienced in employment law.
This would require a more thorough review that cannot be conducted in this forum so you should speak with attorneys experienced in employment law.
Review Governor Inslee’s proclamation 20-46 (and the two that extended it):
Also, it would be worth communicating with the store about cameras and whether there is any video footage.
This kind of situation warrants consultation with an attorney experienced with employment law. There is no quick, easy answer here but options diminish with time, so it would make sense to find counsel now.
These cases in general, and your situation in particular, are not well-suited to assessment in this forum. There are just too many factors that can impact the evaluation, including some not articulated in your question. Having said that, the timing of the “adverse employment actions” raise enough of a question that it may well be worth your while to consult with attorneys experienced in employment law.
It sounds like you and your coworkers have wage and hour claims. Contact an attorney experienced in employment law as soon as possible for a more thorough review.
It seems like you have a claim for unpaid wages and the laws provide strong protection and remedies but it warrants careful review. You may want to talk with an attorney experienced with employment law about your options and the timing for pursuing those claims, as there are some time limits and other considerations that may be important.
It sounds like you have at least some of the core elements: a published false statement about you and a disregard for truth, but it would be important to assess damages and potential defenses in determining whether it makes sense to pursue such a claim. It may warrant a more detailed review with an experienced attorney.