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President Trump speaks to 5,000 contractors at the Shell Chemicals Petrochemical Complex in Monaca, Pennsylvania, Aug. 13. Photo: Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

Union workers at Royal Dutch Shell's Pennsylvania petrochemical plant were given the option of attending President Trump's address there this week or miss out on wages, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette first reported Saturday.

Details: A contractor relayed to employees that Shell sent union leaders a memo the day before Trump's visit Tuesday to the $6 billion construction site that attendance wasn't mandatory, but "only those who showed up at 7 a.m., scanned their ID cards, and prepared to stand for hours — through lunch but without lunch — would be paid," according to the news outlet.

  • "No yelling, shouting, protesting or anything viewed as resistance will be tolerated at the event," Shell instructed employees at the plant in Beaver County just outside Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

What they're saying: Shell spokesperson Curtis Smith told Newsweek that workers who chose to skip the rally received "paid time off," which doesn't count as hours worked and, therefore, doesn't qualify for overtime pay.

  • Another Shell spokesperson, Ray Fisher, said in a statement to the New York Times the event was treated as a training day for workers, "with a guest speaker who happened to be the president."
"It was understood some would choose not to attend the Presidential visit and were given the option to take paid time off. As with any workweek, if someone chooses to take PTO, they are not eligible to receive the maximum overtime available."
— Shell spokesperson Ray Fisher's statement to the NYT

The big picture: Trump's visit was attended by 5,000 workers, according to Newsweek.

Go deeper

Fringe right plots new attacks out of sight

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Domestic extremists are using obscure and private corners of the internet to plot new attacks ahead of Inauguration Day. Their plans are also hidden in plain sight, buried in podcasts and online video platforms.

Why it matters: Because law enforcement was caught flat-footed during last week's Capitol siege, researchers and intelligence agencies are paying more attention to online threats that could turn into real-world violence.

Kids’ screen time up 50% during pandemic

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

When the coronavirus lockdowns started in March, kidstech firm SuperAwesome found that screen time was up 50%. Nearly a year later, that percentage hasn't budged, according to new figures from the firm.

Why it matters: For most parents, pre-pandemic expectations around screen time are no longer realistic. The concern now has shifted from the number of hours in front of screens to the quality of screen time.

In photos: D.C. and U.S. states on alert for pre-inauguration violence

National Guard troops stand behind security fencing with the dome of the U.S. Capitol Building behind them, on Jan. 16. Photo: Kent Nishimura / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Security has been stepped up in Washington, D.C., and state capitols across the U.S. as authorities brace for potential violence this weekend.

Driving the news: Following the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by some supporters of President Trump, the FBI has said there could be armed protests in D.C. and in all 50 state capitols in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration Wednesday.