Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Über*Mart "settles" with DOL

As Reported in BrownWatch
- Wal-Mart settles child labor cases

By Mark Connolly
Editor, Dallas Bureau

I just found this fascinating. Wal-Mart is caught violating child labor laws designed to safeguard folks under the age of 18, and as part of the settlement, they get to have a 15 day advance notice before the Department of Labor investigates any other potential violations.

It seems like an article from The Onion. But, it's not.

Now, I will state for the record that some of these DOL laws seem silly. Basically, anyone under 18 cannot work with any equipment that has a motor on it. That includes floor buffers, bailers, deli slicers, etc. But, the bailer is the thing that really is silly. They don't even want 16 year old people throwing cardboard into the bailer. Granted some 16 and 17 year olds would probably crush themselves in a bailer if allowed within 10 feet of one. So, I can understand not allowing them to push the crush button. Sort of.

Regardless, that is the law, and most companies abide by them. Companies the size of Wal-Mart certainly employ enough lawyers to know better. I guess they just thought they could get away with it. Hmmmm

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