Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
U.S. Department of Labor
US Labor Department finds child labor and minimum wage law violations at Vineland, NJ, vegetable farm
VINELAND, N.J. -- The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division has cited Robert Ferrari Inc. for child labor and minimum wage violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
The investigation, conducted as part of the division’s 2009 child labor initiative, determined that the farm employed two individuals under the age of 12. A $2,282 penalty was assessed against the farm for child labor violations.
Investigators also found that two minors were not paid at least the federal minimum wage, which resulted in a total of $4,888 due to the workers.
“The Labor Department is committed to ensuring that minors are protected on the job,” said Pat Reilly, director of the Wage and Hour Division in Southern New Jersey. “Because of the special dangers posed to children by agricultural employment, it is vital that agricultural employers know and comply with all rules provided under federal law.”
In addition, the Vineland vegetable farm has been assessed a $700 penalty for transportation and recordkeeping violations of the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA).
Regarding agricultural employment, under federal law, individuals ages 16 and above may work in any farm job at any time, and youths of any age may work at any time in any job on a farm owned or operated by their parents. Individuals ages 14 and 15 may work outside school hours in jobs not declared hazardous by the secretary of labor. There are special requirements for employing youth under age 14
This investigation was conducted by the Wage and Hour Division’s Southern New Jersey District Office. Information on federal laws concerning minimum wage, overtime, and migrant and seasonal agricultural workers is available by calling the division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or on the Internet at www.wagehour.dol.gov.The Southern New Jersey District Office may be reached at 609-538-8310.
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