A restaurant franchisee that endangered teen workers has promised to correct current violations and prevent future occurrences at all of its restaurants.
Philly LIV Bacon LLC and three other unnamed corporations – operators of Wendy’s restaurants in Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey – allowed 15-year-old workers at five Pennsylvania locations to manually raise and lower fry baskets, in violation of federal labor laws.
Child labor laws allows 14- and 15-year-old workers to only operate deep fryers that raise and lower baskets automatically, with manual fryers determined to be too dangerous for those minors to operate.
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Wage and Hour Division fined the employer $15,449 for the safety violations and several wage-related violations.
Corporations work with DOL to correct violations
After the investigation, Philly LIV Bacon and the other corporations began working with the Wage and Hour Division in an effort to prevent future violations at their 83 Wendy’s locations. After a review of their workplace practices, Philly LIV Bacon and the three other corporations agreed to:
- train supervisors and managers on child labor requirements
- provide child labor publications to all current and new workers under age 18
- establish an internal number allowing workers to report child labor violations anonymously
- provide workers under the age of 16 with different color nametags than those worn by older workers
- post information about child labor hours’ limitations in a conspicuous place
- place signage on equipment that 14- and 15-year-old workers are prohibited to use, and
- post a “STOP” sticker on all equipment the DOL considers hazardous for use by minors.
The DOL has found child labor violations in more than 4,000 cases from fiscal year 2017 to 2021, with more than 13,000 minor-aged workers employed in violation.