Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
U.S. Department of Labor
U.S. Labor Department cites Kansas grocer for child labor violations Kingman-based company pays more than $34,000 in civil money penalties
KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- White’s King Co. Inc., doing business as White’s Foodliner, a grocery store with locations in Kingman, Hugoton and Goddard, Kan., has paid $34,535 in civil money penalties for violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) child labor provisions.
The investigations, conducted by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, also cited the company for violations of the FLSA’s recordkeeping and overtime provisions, and restored $811 in back wages to one employee.
“Youth workers gain valuable experience and make great contributions to the labor force, but employers must comply with applicable federal and state child labor laws,” said James Koren, the Wage and Hour Division’s district director in Kansas City. “These laws help ensure the safety of our youth workforce while providing a balance between work and school.”
Specifically, four minors regularly worked past 7 p.m. and/or more than three hours on school days as well as more than eight hours on nonschool days. Three minor employees operated motor vehicles to make deliveries during work hours and 18 minors regularly loaded and/or operated paper balers, both of which are work activities prohibited under the Labor Department’s hazardous occupations standards for minors.
The overtime violation occurred when the employer failed to pay time and one-half the employee’s regular rate for hours over 40 worked at home, and these hours were not properly recorded.
Child labor regulations identify 17 hazardous orders that prohibit specific activities for workers under 18. The FLSA provides that minors may not work more than three hours on school days, eight hours on nonschool days, 18 hours during school weeks or 40 hours during nonschool weeks. Also, 14- and 15-year-olds may work during nonschool hours but no later than 7 p.m. (9 p.m. from June 1 through Labor Day).
Furthermore, the FLSA requires covered, nonexempt employees to be paid at least the federal minimum wage of $6.55 per hour for all hours worked, and time and one-half their regular rates of pay for hours worked beyond 40 in a week. Effective July 24, 2009, the minimum wage will increase to $7.25 per hour. Employers must also maintain accurate time and payroll records. For more information about the FLSA and youth employment laws, call the Department of Labor’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Information is also available on the Internet at http://www.wagehour.dol.gov or, for youth employment laws, at http://www.youthrules.dol.gov.
U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. 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 www.dol.gov/compliance.