Stuffed-toy retailer Build-A-Bear Workshop has been cited for child labor violations, including several that allegedly occurred at its Aurora store.
According to a federal audit, the company allowed workers under age 18 to operate trash compactors and ride in freight elevators without an adult operator. The investigation found that 14 minors at five stores nationwide were performing prohibited tasks.
Build-a-Bear has now instituted a policy of not hiring anyone under 18.
Note: Child labor laws contain lengthy lists of work that minors aren’t allowed to perform, as well as specific rules that place conditions for the jobs they are permitted to do. Despite that complexity, any employer that hires workers under age 18 must ensure they perform only those tasks allowed under the law.
Many states have child labor rules that are more restrictive than the federal government’s. If you choose to hire workers under 18, check with your attorney to get a complete list of allowable jobs for minors. That list should be part of supervisors’ training so they know what work is appropriate for minors.
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