America Runs on…Child Labor?

We have suggested in the past that employers consider hiring kids to fill open positions. We also noted how important it is to follow the labor laws that are specific to minors, both state and federal. Apparently, Dunkin (formerly known as Dunkin Donuts) has a deep bench of workers a lot younger than Ben Affleck to keep us all caffeinated. Go Dunkin! But some shops forgot to apply the rules protecting minors and are now paying the price.

Several Dunkin shops in Massachusetts have been fined for violating child labor laws in recent weeks. The violations ran the gamut of prohibitions:  failure to obtain valid work permits; employing minors after 8 p.m. without adult supervision; employment of 16- or 17-year-olds for more than nine hours a day; and employment of minors earlier than 6 a.m and after 10 p.m. How big are the fines? Between two different franchise operators, Dunkin paid $372,000. That is a lot of donuts.

Employing minors does not have to end this way. Yes, there are some particular practices that need to be followed but we have dozens of clients who regularly employ minors without incident. Supervisors, managers and anyone who schedules workers need to know the laws. We regularly provide succinct, virtual training on this topic and many others to help your business stay in compliance. Contact us with questions or if you are interested in manager training on this or any area of workplace law. We can help.