McDonald's

This June 25, 2019, file photo shows a McDonald’s sign outside the restaurant in Pittsburgh.

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BOISE — Eleven McDonald’s locations in the Treasure Valley were found in violation of child labor laws following an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Divisions.

Officials said in a news release Friday that Darmody Enterprises L.T.D. — owner and operator of McDonald’s restaurants in Idaho — has paid $50,000 in civil money penalties for violating the Fair Labor Standards Act, which established minimum wage, overtime pay, record keeping and youth employment standards, according to the department’s website.

Officials said the investigation revealed the employer of the 11 restaurants — located in Boise, Meridian and Nampa — allowed “14- and 15-year-old employees to work more than 3 hours during school days; past 7 p.m. during school days; more than 8 hours per day on non-school days; and past 9 p.m. from June 1 through Labor Day.”

The employer also allowed the 14- and 15-year-olds to operate manual fryer baskets, and failed to maintain accurate “proof of age” of one minor employee, according to the release.

“Child labor laws exist to strike a balance between providing a meaningful work experience for young people and keeping them safe on the job so that the work does not jeopardize their health and well-being or educational opportunities,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Thomas Silva, who is based in Portland, Oregon. “Employers should evaluate their employment practices to ensure that they comply, and avoid violations like those found in this case. We invite all employers to contact the Wage and Hour Division for compliance assistance and with any questions they may have.”

Requests for comment on what prompted the U.S. Department of Labor’s investigation were not immediately returned as of 3:30 p.m. Friday.

Olivia Heersink is the Canyon County public safety reporter. You can reach her at oheersink@idahopress.com, or by calling 208-465-8178. Follow her on Twitter @heersinkolivia.

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