BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Chipotle and the Massachusetts Attorney General's office have reached a $2 million settlement over child labor and earned sick time violations, AG Maura Healey's office announced Monday.
As part of the settlement, the chain was cited $1.37 million in restitution and penalties, which Healey's office said stem from about 13,253 child labor, wage, and hour law violations across its over 50 Massachusetts locations.
Healey's office was tipped off to illegal practices by a parent of a minor worker, who said their child was made to work past midnight at a Beverly Chipotle. From there, the office audited the chain's records between 2015 and 2019, finding that minors worked without valid permits, or worked too late or too many hours more than state law allowed.
The AG's office also said the chain didn't notify the workers of their earned sick time law rights, and that some locations didn't pay their workers within six days of the end of a pay period, as state law requires.
"Chipotle is a major national restaurant chain that employs thousands of young people across the country and it has a duty to ensure minors are safe working in its restaurants," Healey said in a release. "We hope these citations send a message to other fast food chains and restaurants that they cannot violate our child labor laws and put young people at risk."
The company will also pay $500,000 toward a fund "to benefit young people through education programs about child labor and enforcement of the laws, as well as training and workforce development for young workers," according to the AG's release.
Last year, Healey's office cited Mexican restaurant chain Qdoba for over $400,000 in penalties for child labor law violations.
Children under 18 aren't allowed to work over 9 hours a day or 48 hours a week under Massachusetts law. In addition, workers aged 14-15 can't work past 7 p.m., and workers 16-17 can't work past 10 p.m. on a school night (or past midnight on a non-school night).
Healey's office issued more than $487,000 worth of child labor law violation citations in the 2019 fiscal year.
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