Myrtle Beach Ben & Jerry’s franchisee to pay $21,360 in back wages, fines after US Department of Labor investigation finds wage, child labor violations
MYRTLE BEACH, SC – While the operator of six South Carolina ice cream franchise locations sold customers frozen treats, a federal investigation has gotten 61 workers their just desserts – a total of $16,250 in back wages – for the employer’s failure to pay overtime at six Myrtle Beach locations.
U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigators found Bryers of MB Inc. and Rowland Dairies Inc. – which operate six Ben & Jerry’s locations – paid the workers straight-time for all the hours that they worked, violating the Fair Labor Standards Act by failing to pay overtime when workers’ hours exceeded 40 in a workweek.
In addition to the wage violations, the division also assessed the employer a $5,110 civil money penalty for violations of child labor requirements after the employer allowed two 12-year-olds to operate snow-cone stands, a violation of federal law that governs minimum ages for non-agricultural work. The employer also failed to keep accurate records detailing the dates of birth for the minor workers, and the number of hours some employees worked.
“Employers must ensure they pay workers all the wages they have earned, including overtime, and must pay special attention to the rules about minor employees,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Jamie Benefiel, in Columbia, South Carolina. “The Wage and Hour Division is committed to keeping young employees safe in the workplace. This case should serve as notice to other employers who may employ minors in similar conditions to ensure they comply, and to ensure they pay all workers their rightful wages.”
The division offers numerous resources to ensure employers have the tools they need to understand their responsibilities and to comply with federal law, such as online videos and confidential calls to local Wage and Hour Division offices. Learn more about the FLSA. Contact the Wage and Hour Division toll-free at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) for more information.