South Florida Stores Put Profits Before the Safety of Minors In Violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act
Do you knw that the Fari Labor Standard Act covers minors?
Apparently stores in south Floridaa learned the hard way! In a hard hitting news piece on January 22, 2009, WPTV, wrote
“– As a result of a child labor mall initiative undertaken in south Florida by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, seven employers are being fined a total of $53,271 for violations of the youth employment provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
Investigators visited 19 stores, restaurants, and movie theaters located at three malls – Dolphin Mall in Miami, Sawgrass Mills Mall in Fort Lauderdale, and The Gardens Mall in West Palm Beach, Fla. When Wage and Hour staff conducted random inspections, they found 50 minors being allowed by management at establishments in these malls to operate hazardous equipment, such as trash compactors and paper balers.
“While we recognize the benefits of teenage employment, the Labor Department is dedicated to protecting our youth from occupations deemed hazardous by the Secretary of Labor,” said Will Garnitz, the Wage and Hour Division’s district director in Miami.
The FLSA prohibits the employment of people under the age of 18 years in any non-agricultural occupations that the Labor Department has declared hazardous. These dangerous tasks are identified by 17 hazardous occupation orders, one of which requires that employees be at least 18 years old to operate or assist in operating power-driven paper products machines.
Minors may not work more than three hours on school days, eight hours on nonschool days, 18 hours in school weeks or 40 hours during nonschool weeks. The regulations detail that 14- and 15-year-olds may work during non-school hours, but no later than 7:00 p.m. (9:00 p.m. from June 1 until Labor Day). “
If you are aware of child labor violations of the FLSA, we at Cavey and Barrett, your Florida wage and hour law firm, suggest you immediately call your local wage and hour office and report any violations.
Answering these broad-based questions isn’t easy. Help is a phone call away. You can contact Nancy Cavey, an experienced long-term disability attorney at 727-894-3188.