The authorities have discovered hundreds of children under the age of 16 working illegally in McDonald’s branches across the country.
The shocking discovery was made by the United States Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division which revealed that two of the minors were just ten years old.
According to the reports, the two 10-year-olds in question were working without pay at a McDonald’s in Louisville, Kentucky. Besides unpaid labor, the children sometimes worked night shifts up until 2 am.
It was further discovered that one of the children operated the deep fryer even though it is considered “dangerous equipment” and forbidden from use by those under 16.
The two children were allegedly involved in a series of tasks at the McDonald’s including cleaning, working the cash register, and serving meals.
It remains unclear if the children were forced to work and whether their parents also worked at the same store or not.
The two children are among 305 minors the department found working illegally across McDonald’s chains in Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, and Maryland.
Moreover, over sixty McDonald’s restaurants run by Bauer Food LLC, Archways Richmond LLC, and Bell Restaurant Group LLC were found in violation of child labor laws.
Bauer Food LLC, the company that employed the 10-year-olds and 24 employees under the age of 16, was fined $39,711 after their violations.
Meanwhile, Archways Richmond LLC faces a $143,566 bill after employing 242 teenagers above the age of 14 and under the age of 16. Some of the teens were allegedly not paid for overtime while others worked too early or too late.
Bell Restaurant Group LLC was also fined $14,730 for illegal shifts involving minors and unpaid overtime wages.
While the minimum age to work in the US is 14, there are many limitations for those under the age of 16. Some of the limitations include the duration of their shifts and the time of the day they do their job.
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