Authorities Discover Two 10-Year-Olds Allegedly Working In McDonald’s Kitchen For No Pay

(Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

Julianna Frieman Contributor
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Two 10-year-olds were discovered allegedly working in a McDonald’s kitchen for no pay, WDRB reported.

The reported underage employees were found allegedly working at the Louisville, Kentucky, restaurant by the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor, according to WDRB.

The Labor Department revealed that 305 children were allegedly unlawfully employed by Bauer Food LLC, Archways Richwood LLC and Bell Restaurant Group I LLC, the outlet reported. Hours allegedly exceeded the legally permitted threshold and tasks prohibited for young workers were reportedly performed. Some minors allegedly worked past midnight, operating equipment reserved for adults.

The three franchises, which own more than 60 McDonald’s locations in Kentucky, Indiana, Maryland and Ohio, were also found to be allegedly in violation of child labor laws during the investigation, according to CNN.

“Too often, employers fail to follow the child labor laws that protect young workers,” Karen Garnett-Civils, the agency’s wage and hour division district director, said. “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.”

A combined civil money penalty of $212,754 was levied against the three franchises, CNN reported. (RELATED: Biden Admin Opens Probe Into Illegal Immigrant Children Reportedly Working In American Cereal Factories)

Bauer Foods LLC allegedly employed 24 minors under the age of 16 to work at their 10 McDonald’s locations, according to a statement released by the U.S. Department of Labor. The two 10-year-olds reportedly worked for this franchise. Archways Richwell LLC allegedly hired 242 minor employees and Bell Restaurant Group I LLC allegedly hired 39 minor employees between ages 14 and 15.

Federal child labor laws limit underage employment for children ages 14 and 15 to time outside of school hours. Three hours shall not be exceeded on a school day, and 18 hours shall not be exceeded during a school week, according to the Labor Department.

“We are seeing an increase in federal child labor violations, including allowing minors to operate equipment or handle types of work that endangers them or employs them for more hours or later in the day than federal law allows,” Garnett-Civils said, WDRB reported. “An employer who hires young workers must know the rules. An employer, parent or young worker with questions can contact us for help understanding their obligations and rights under the law.”