Human Resources News & Insights

DOL investigation of Chuck E. Cheese turns up $28K in FLSA violations

Irony alert: A well-known pizza chain whose motto is “Where a kid can be a kid,” was fined for violating the FLSA’s child-labor laws.

Minors at various Chuck E. Cheese locations were acting as adults by using two types of machines that are often the root cause of child-labor violations.

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) only adults are allowed to operate trash compactors and dough-mixing machines.

The violations turned up during a routine DOL investigation, of multiple California-based Chuck E. Cheese facilities. Nine branches permitted teenage employees to run trash compactors, and one facility allowed minors to run dough-mixing equipment.

A spokesperson for the DOL said those two types of machines often pop up in child-labor violation probes, according to a report by the Mercury News.

The company was fined more than $28,000. It admitted to the mistake and has since instructed underage employees not to operate the machines. It also applied warning stickers to the equipment indicating that use by minors is prohibited.

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  1. Common mistake. This is yet another reason to have qualified (trained) managers in place. Real managers would have known this was not allowed from the get go.

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