Nine Chuck E. Cheese's restaurants have been fined a combined $28,000 by the U.S. Department of Labor for being in violation of federal child labor laws. The locations are all in the San Francisco Bay Area.
According to the Los Angeles Times, 16 minors employed at the restaurants were put at risk while loading and operating on-site trash compactors. Additionally, two young employees ran a dough mixing machine illegally.
Ruben Rosalez, acting administrator of the department's western Wage and Hour Division, said the employees' safety was sacrificed, and the employers have an obligation to ensure that minors are not performing such harmful tasks.
Chuck E. Cheese's, operated by parent company CEC Entertainment, has agreed to comply with the federal regulations and pay the penalties. Keys were removed from the units' trash compactors and those under 18 have been instructed not to operate the equipment.
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