Feds say Jackson McDonalds operator violated child labor laws

JACKSON, Mich., (WSYM) - A Jackson company that operates 10 McDonalds restaurants has paid a hefty fine for violating child labor laws.

The U.S Department of Labor fined Stejoca Inc. $26,487 for breaking the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Federal investigators determined the company broke wage laws by making 73 fourteen and fifteen year old employees work more than 3 hours on school days, and more than 8 hours on days when school was not in session. The feds say Stejoca Inc. also allowed the teenagers to work later than 7 p.m between Labor Day and June 1, and after 9 p.m from June 1 through Labor Day, which also violates the law.

"Employment standards for fourteen and fifteen year olds ensure minors gain a positive work experience that does not interfere with their education, health and well being," said Wage and Hour District Director Mary O'Rourke, in Grand Rapids. "Child labor violations can be avoided when employers understand the rules."

The Department of Labor says Stejoca Inc. has revamped its child labor compliance program in response to the investigation. The company implemented a new timekeeping system that automatically screens punch-in and out times for fourteen and fifteen year olds. The system alerts management when there are possible conflicts with federal laws.