The U.S. Department of Labor has fined a Littleton, Colo., Subway shop for violations of federal child labor laws in a case in which a 15-year-old was murdered while working late on a school night.
"This tragedy demonstrates why it is so important that employers, parents, teachers and working teens know and comply with child labor laws," said Secretary of Labor Alexis M. Herman. "We must work together to ensure that our youngest workers enjoy safe, positive and legal job experiences."
Hartman Enterprises Inc., doing business as Subway Sandwiches and Salads, was fined $18,625.
The Labor Department''s Wage and Hour Division found that eight minors were employed by the shop in violation of the child labor provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The fine against Hartman Enterprises included the maximum assessment of $10,000 for employing the murdered 15-year-old past 7 p.m. Children that young cannot work before 7 a.m. or after 7 p.m.
The minor, killed Feb. 13, routinely was assigned to shut down the restaurant at closing time, 10 p.m.
Bernard E. Anderson, assistant secretary of labor for employment standards, noted that these penalty assessments send a strong message to employers who violate the law and that the department is committed to safeguarding the health, safety and educational opportunities of young workers.
"Too many teens are being injured -- even killed -- in the workplace. Employers must act responsibly and pay special attention to the child labor laws when hiring young workers," said Anderson.
Last month, Herman launched the fifth annual "Work Safe This Summer" public awareness campaign to remind employers and young workers that on-the-job injuries and deaths are preventable.
For more information about "Work Safe This Summer," go to www.dol.gov/dol/esa.
by Virginia Sutcliffe