McDonald’s franchisee caught violating child labor laws

More than 100 minors were involved

McDonald’s franchisee caught violating child labor laws

One operator of 13 McDonald’s locations in Pennsylvania has been fined $57,332 for labor law violations committed against 101 minor-aged workers.

Santonastasso Enterprises LLC, based in Bridgeville had 14-and-15-year-old employees working outside permissible hours, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division.

It noted that the employer had the young workers working:

  • more than three hours per day and after 7 p.m. on school days, when the law forbids work beyond that time
  • later than 9 p.m. on days between June 1 and Labor Day, when they may legally work until 9 p.m.
  • more than eight hours on a non-school day, and more than 18 hours a week during a regular school week

These are all violations of the child labor laws under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The child labor laws ensure that when young people work, the work is safe and does not jeopardize their health, well-being or educational opportunities.

In June, DOL strengthened its ethical recruitment of temporary migrant workers through the “Guidance on Fair Recruitment Practices for Temporary Migrant Workers”. The guidance also stated that authorities must ensure that the recruitment process happens in conditions that safeguard the fundamental rights of workers, including through the implementation of measures to prevent forced labor and child labor.

“Permitting young workers to work excessive hours can jeopardize their safety, well-being and education,” explained John DuMont, wage and hour district director, in Pittsburgh. “Employers who hire young workers must understand and comply with federal child labor laws or face costly consequences.”

Santonastasso Enterprises committed the violations in:



Employees Affected

3023 Washington Pike



225 Mt. Lebanon Blvd.

Castle Shannon


1010 4th Ave.



1 Poplar St.



2805 Gracy Center Way

Moon Township


3085 Pittsburgh Road

Star Junction


600 Pine Hollow Road

McKees Rocks


100 Davis Blvd.



3708 Forbes Ave.



500 Liberty Ave.



6361 Penn Ave.



273 East Roy Furman Highway



5 Sugar Run



Investigators also found Santonastasso Enterprises violated child labor occupations standards at the 100 Davis Blvd. location in Pittsburgh. There, the employer allowed a minor under the age of 16 to operate a deep fryer which was not equipped with a device to automatically lower and raise the baskets.

Previously, the DOL sued Sacramento City Councilman Sean Loloee for a variety of labor violations as owner of the local Viva Supermarket chain, including employing minors in hazardous occupations.

Between fiscal years 2017 and 2021, the DOL identified child labor violations in more than 4,000 cases, finding more than 13,000 minor-aged workers employed in violation, it said.

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