If you had to guess how much Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are worth, what would you say? One billion? That’s certainly the popular opinion among the average person, giving that their retail empire, Dualstar, has been valued at that very amount. But, no, they aren’t billionaires. They are, however, collectively worth $300 million according to the most recent estimates.
So, to recap: Dualstar is a billion-dollar company, and the Olsen Twins are very rich. Between the brand and the micro moguls, that’s a lot of zeros. And yet, 40 past and present interns are suing them for working obscene hours and not getting paid.
The lead plaintiff in the suit is Shahista Lalani, and she once worked as a design intern for the Row, the Olsens’ label. Lalani told Page Six, “I was doing the work of three interns. I was talking to [my boss] all day, all night.” According to reports, she was also hospitalized for dehydration.
Additionally, Lalani says she would typically work 50-hour work weeks – as an intern. “They’re kind of mean to you. Other interns have cried. I’d see a lot of kids crying doing coffee runs, photocopying stuff,” said Lalani. They did not even get college credit for all of this work.
What do you think of unpaid internships? Unfair or a necessary step?