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Apple Retail Workers' Class Action Suit Dismissed

Store employees wanted to be compensated for the time they spent waiting for their bags to be searched.

Anthony Quintano for Re/code

A federal judge has dismissed a class action suit brought by Apple retail workers over the company’s bag-search policy.

The hourly retail workers were asking to be paid for the time spent waiting for a manager or security guard to search their bags before they left the Apple store for meal breaks or at the end of the day. The company said it conducts these searches to deter theft.

The plaintiffs, Amanda Friekin and Dean Pelle, brought a class action suit in June, claiming that state labor laws entitled them to be compensated for this time.

In a ruling Saturday, Judge William Alsup of the Federal District Court in San Francisco sided with Apple, finding that the decision to bring a bag to work is a choice — and retail workers could avoid the wait by leaving such items at home.

“Apple could have alleviated that concern [about theft] by prohibiting its employees from bringing personal bags or personal Apple devices into the store,” Alsup wrote. “Instead, Apple took the lesser step of giving its employees the optional benefit of bringing such items to work, which comes with the conditions that they must undergo searches … before they exit the store.”

The plaintiff’s attorney could immediately be reached for comment, and Apple declined comment.

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