Philadelphia crossing guard turns to Action News over vanishing paychecks

"I show up every day. I don't have a problem going to work. I just want to be paid for what I do," she said.

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Friday, December 30, 2022
Philly crossing guard turns to Action News over vanishing paychecks
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A Philadelphia crossing guard wants to know why she wasn't being paid despite showing up for work.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A Philadelphia crossing guard wants to know why she wasn't being paid despite showing up for work, so she turned to the Action News Investigative Team to get answers.

DaryLynn Smoot says the payroll glitch forced her to get a second job after going payless for several weeks.

On any school day, you'll find her crossing kids at Patterson Elementary on the corner of 70th Street and Buist Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia.

"Every day. Snow, rain, cold... I am out there every day," she said.

Smoot says despite showing up, the city isn't paying up.

Her payday saga began on September 9 when she didn't get her first check.

A call to city payroll yielded no answers.

"I show up every day. I don't have a problem going to work. I just want to be paid for what I do," said Smoot.

Then two weeks later there was another payless payday.

Smoot says she was told she was "lost in the system" and that payroll was working out the kinks.

But those kinks didn't iron out. Another payday came and Smoot received a check for just $6.11.

Crossing guards are overseen by the Philadelphia Police Department.

"So Monday, we had a holiday," she said. "I just put my chair out and sat across the street from the police department. And I just wanted to see if anybody would come out and say, 'Can I help you?' Nobody showed up and said anything."

The second-year crossing guard told the Action News Investigative Team it took two months last year for the city to issue her check.

Back then, she says the city blamed the delay on processing her as a new employee into its system.

Despite the past hiccups, she stayed on the job and even worked for the city this summer as a lifeguard.

When she returned to crossing kids in August she didn't expect to have to once again fight for her money.

"I can't keep doing this over and over every year," she said. "Why did you lose my paycheck?"

Smoot says she had no choice but to turn to Acton News for help.

"I shouldn't have to live like this and go get another job because y'all don't pay me. I had to. I had no other choice," she said.

We reached out to Philadelphia police. Although police could not explain why she wasn't paid, within days of our inquiry Smoot received a partial check.

The following week, the city made her whole.