300 Minors Found Working at 3 McDonald’s Franchisees

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Kissimmee, Florida – February 6, 2022: Night Closeup View of McDonald’s Restaurant Building Exterior.

*Three separate McDonald’s franchisees in Louisville are facing fines from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) after hundreds of minors — including two 10-year-olds — were found working there.

As part of its efforts to end child labor abuses in the Southeast, the Wage and Hour Division initiated the investigation, the Labor Department said in a news release on Tuesday.

“The division investigated Bauer Food LLC, Archways Richwood LLC and Bell Restaurant Group I LLC,” per the release, and found they employed 305 minors.

As 6ABC.com reports, Kentucky-based McDonald’s franchisee operator Bauer Food LLC hired two 10-year old’s to work as late as 2 a.m. at one location. The child was even permitted operate a deep fryer. The state’s child labor laws prohibit minors under 14 from working, CNN reports.

“Investigators from the department’s Wage and Hour Division found two 10-year-old workers at a Louisville McDonald’s restaurant among many violations of federal labor laws committed by three Kentucky McDonald’s franchise operators,” the release said, CNN reports. “Investigators also determined two 10-year-old children were employed – but not paid – and sometimes worked as late as 2 a.m.”

Tiffanie Boyd, senior vice president and chief people officer at McDonald’s USA, told CNN: “These reports are unacceptable, deeply troubling and run afoul of the high expectations we have for the entire McDonald’s brand. […] We are committed to ensuring our franchisees have the resources they need to foster safe workplaces for all employees and maintain compliance with all labor laws.”

“In all, the investigations led to assessments of $212,544 in civil money penalties against the employers,” the release said.

“Too often, employers fail to follow the child labor laws that protect young workers,” said Karen Garnett-Civils, the agency’s wage and hour division district director, in a statement. “Under no circumstances should there ever be a 10-year-old child working in a fast-food kitchen around hot grills, ovens and deep fryers.”

READ MORE: Al Sharpton Calls on McDonald’s CEO to Address Racial Discrimination

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