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Press Releases

U.S. Department of Labor
Wage and Hour Division
Release Number: 10-209-DEN


Feb. 24, 2010


Rich Kulczewski



US Labor Department launches concentrated enforcement initiative of restaurants in Utah

Focus on minimum wage, overtime and child labor violations

SALT LAKE CITY -- The U.S. Department of Labor has launched a concentrated enforcement effort of restaurants throughout Utah to combat violations of federal minimum wage, overtime pay and child labor regulations. With a workforce comprised primarily of youth and low-wage adult workers, the restaurant industry has been identified by the department’s Wage and Hour Division as one for improved compliance.

“During fiscal year 2010, we plan to conduct approximately 65 investigations of restaurant establishments throughout Utah to determine the current level of Fair Labor Standards Act compliance,” said Lee Ann Dunbar, the Wage and Hour Division’s district director in Salt Lake City. “Historically, we have found low compliance rates in the restaurant industry, and we plan to use the results of this year’s initiative to develop future strategies to increase compliance levels in order to secure fair, safe and healthy workplaces for employees.”

Currently, the Wage and Hour Division has a confidential, online self-survey to help employers determine their levels of child labor compliance. The “Restaurant Employer Self Assessment Tool” may be accessed at or obtained from the division’s Salt Lake City office by calling 801-524-5706.

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that employers pay covered workers at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked, and one and one-half times their regular rates of pay for hours worked over 40 in a week, unless otherwise exempt. Employers also must maintain accurate time and payroll records.

The FLSA’s child labor provisions are designed to protect workers by limiting the types of jobs and the number of hours they may work. Children under 14 years of age may not be employed in non-agricultural occupations covered by the FLSA. Youth 14 and 15 years of age may be employed outside of school hours in a variety of non-manufacturing and non-hazardous jobs for limited periods of time and under specified conditions. Sixteen- and 17-year-olds may be employed for unlimited hours in any occupation other than those declared hazardous by the secretary of labor.

For more information on youth employment laws, visit or call the Department of Labor’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). General information on the FLSA is also available on the Internet at


U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at (202) 693-7828 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America’s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit