By DON McINTOSH
Fred Meyer was recently assessed $55,440 in penalties to settle willful violations of child labor laws, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced May 17. An investigation by the agency’s Wage and Hour Division found the company regularly allowing minors to load power-driven box balers at stores in Oregon City, Happy Valley, and The Dalles. The violations were termed “willful” because Fred Meyer should have known better: It was cited for similar violations in 2007 and 2008.
As part of the settlement, Fred Meyer agreed to “implement enhanced measures to ensure future compliance with child labor regulations at all their locations.”
DOL declined to offer any detail about what investigators found or how Fred Meyer will remedy the violations. An agency spokesperson said no documents would be made public because the case was resolved administratively.