- A Chuck E. Cheese and Pasqually's Pizza & Wings restaurant violated federal child labor regulations, according to the results of a U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigation announced Dec. 8.
- The violations center on a 17-year-old worker who used and cleaned a power-driven dough mixer in violation of federal child labor regulations. The restaurant also failed to record the birthday of a minor employee.
- The restaurant paid $2,285 in civil money penalties for the alleged violations.
Federal law prohibits employed minors from operating hazardous equipment, DOL said. Hazardous equipment includes dough and batter mixers, meat slicers and other power-driven equipment in bakeries and restaurants.
Federal law also bars youth workers from working excessive hours.
"Putting minors at risk by allowing them to perform tasks or to work with hazardous equipment is serious business," Wage and Hour Division District Director Jorge R. Alvarez said in a news release. "Part-time employment should give young workers the opportunity to gain useful experience in a safe work environment and not allow work to interfere with studies."
Alvarez urged employers, parents and young workers to contact DOL "for assistance in understanding and complying with the law."
Employers may need to increasingly pay attention to child labor laws; recent data suggested young workers comprise a growing portion of the workforce. Teenagers made up 17% of the limited-service workforce in 2019, according to a recent report from Black Box Intelligence. They represented 24% at the end of Q3 in 2021.