Ridley’s Family Market found in violation of child labor regulations

A Department of Labor representative said it is important for parents, youth and employers to be aware of child regulations
Published: May. 18, 2022 at 2:05 PM MDT
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IDAHO (KMVT/KSVT) — Three investigations by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division found child labor violations at multiple grocery stores in Idaho and Oregon.

Among the stores cited in the investigation was Idaho-based grocery chain Ridley’s Family Markets. Their stores in Gooding, Middleton, Star and Weiser were found to be in violation because minors were allowed to operate a power-driver baler and compactor. It was also found during the investigation that a 16-year-old worker at the Middleton location was injured while loading and operating a baler.

A Department of Labor representative said it is important for parents, youth and employers to be aware of child regulations.

“It’s very tempting for kids, even if employers put on controls on, they want to do a job, they want to do a good job and they maybe go above and beyond what they’re supposed to do,” said the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division’s Carrie Aguilar. “It’s really on the employers to make sure the rules are being followed.”

Federal and state labor laws applying to young workers can be found here.

KMVT reached out to Ridley’s Family Market who responded via statement:

Ridley’s Family Markets, as a community employer, cares deeply about employee safety.

Unfortunately, a Ridley’s employee was injured last year at our Middleton location. The injury occurred when the employee chose to violate company policy and ignore safety warnings on a piece of power equipment. Thankfully, coworkers and management responded quickly and got the employee the medical treatment needed.

Ridley’s has always prioritized safety and has continued to do so even more since this accident occurred. Ridley’s has not and will not require or permit minors to operate power equipment as part of their typical job duties, and this accident is a reminder why that policy is so important. We’ll always strive to do better as a company and for our employees, so additional training and safeguards are being developed regularly to prevent future accidents.

Mark Ridley, Ridley’s Family Markets, Inc.

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