Tampa Pizza Franchise Violated Child Labor Laws

The Marco's locations allowed underage employees to work improper hours and perform hazardous tasks.

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A Tampa Marco's Pizza franchisee has paid nearly $8,000 in penalties after allowing 15-year-olds to work outside permitted hours and engage in hazardous duties.

Investigators from the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division found that American Pizza Empire LLC – operating as Marcos Pizza in Riverview – allowed three 15-year-old workers to work past 7 p.m., or more than three hours during a school day, between Labor Day and June 1, and more than 18 hours in a week while school was in session, in violation of the child labor provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

In addition, the employer allowed one 15-year-old employee to operate a power-driven bakery machine to stretch and flatten pizza dough, a hazardous occupation for minors under the FLSA. The same worker sustained a burn to their hand during baking activities, which led to an additional violation.

The agency assessed $7,950 in penalties to address the child labor violations.

“Employers must understand child labor rules and regulations when they decide to hire minor-aged workers. Learning about hazardous occupations for minors after an incident occurs can lead to serious and costly consequences,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Nicolas Ratmiroff in Tampa. “We encourage employers to use our Youthrules.gov website or to contact the Wage and Hour Division to learn how to keep these young workers safe on the job.”

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