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Strippers sue Colorado nightclub in labor dispute

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Four former exotic dancers at a Denver-area strip club sued the bar’s owner on Tuesday, claiming that instead of being paid an hourly wage they were instead charged fees to perform and made to work for tips that they had to share with other workers.

Chada Mantooth, Gale Raffaele, Alexis Nagle and Nicole Bujok allege in a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Denver that they were required to pay the club for stage time, and were assessed extra fees to dance during more lucrative late-night shifts.

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The lawsuit against the adult nightclub Shotgun Willie’s in the Denver suburb of Glendale was the latest in a series of legal actions filed in Colorado by Denver lawyer Mari Newman on behalf of strippers in area clubs.

“This is yet another case about the exploitation of one of the most vulnerable groups of employees: young women working as dancers in adult entertainment establishments,” the lawsuit says.

The complaint names Shotgun Willie’s and its owner, Debra Matthews, as defendants.  A message left for Matthews was not immediately returned.

In it, the women say they were improperly classified as independent contractors so the club could flout federal and state minimum wage and overtime laws, despite court rulings that have ruled dancers in adult clubs are entitled to such protections.

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The women worked entirely on gratuities from customers which they were then required to split with bouncers, disc jockeys and other club employees, the lawsuit said. They are seeking “unpaid back wages, overtime pay, fees, shared tips, fines and all other unlawful kickbacks,” according to the lawsuit.

In March, Newman filed a similar lawsuit in Denver federal court against VCG Holding Corp., which owns strip clubs in seven states, including several in Colorado.

Newman said is seeking class action status for both of the Colorado lawsuits, which requires a judge’s approval.

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She said in a telephone interview Tuesday that the adult entertainment industry nationwide needs to be held accountable for taking advantage of young women who are struggling to make a living.

“If I have to do it club-by-club, so be it,” she said.  “No matter what one thinks of their job, everyone deserves to be paid for their work.”

(Editing by Sharon Bernstein)

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Black principal instantly questioned by white cop after accidentally walking past crime scene

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On Wednesday, the Baltimore County Police released disturbing body camera footage of a white police officer antagonizing a black high school principal in front of his 15-year-old son, and demanding to know whether he was responsible for a crime scene he had just witnessed — because he happened to be walking past.

"You guys weren't involved in that at all were you?" the officer asked Vance Benton and his son in the footage, which was shared by the Daily Mail.

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Fox & Friends host right-winger pushing white nationalist views: ‘Common sense is now a hate crime’

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A British writer popular with white nationalists appeared Thursday morning on "Fox & Friends" to argue that "common sense" ideas about identity had been turned into a "hate crime."

Anti-immigrant activist Douglas Murray -- author of "Neoconservatism: Why We Need It" and "The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam" -- spoke to Fox News host Ainsley Earhardt about his viral essay, "Vacuous liberal wokeness is now beyond parody."

"You say that 'liberal wokeness' turned beliefs that once seemed like into hate crimes," Earhardt said. "What used to be considered common sense that's now a hate crime, in your opinion?"

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Trump has shrunk the White House entirely around himself: ‘It is a government of one’

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President Donald Trump has cleared out all the constraints in his White House, which he's running much like the Trump Organization.

The president has chased away four national security advisers, three chiefs of staff, three directors of oval office operations and five communications directors -- an unprecedented amount of turnover for a modern president — and finds himself surrounded by compliant staffers and aides, reported Politico.

“It is a government of one in the same way in which the Trump Organization was a company of one,” said one former senior administration official.

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