Amusement parks facing labor law fines

Amusement parks facing labor law fines
Wednesday, August 3, 2011 - 5:49pm

Blue Bayou Waterpark and Dixie Landin’ LLC are facing a mountain of charges related to violations of child labor laws. That’s because the Department of Labor says they allowed teens to work more hours than is legally allowed.

The US Labor Department investigated the two amusement parks owned by Samuel B. Haynes Jr. and found them to be in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. A review of payroll records revealed that 49 of minors ages 14 and 15 were allowed to work more than eight hours per day.

“The laws and regulations for young workers are very specific and employers in violation will be penalized,” said Cynthia Watson, regional administrator of the Wage and Hour Division in the Southwest. “This employer, which hires hundreds of Baton Rouge-area minors during the summer months, must comply with the regulations and restrictions that apply.”

The investigation spanned a two-year period from March 23, 2009, to March 22, 2011. Under the FLSA, workers under age 16 are subject to specific time and occupation restrictions. Fourteen- and 15-year-olds may work in certain occupations outside school hours, but not before 7 a.m. or later than 7 p.m. (9 p.m. from June 1 through Labor Day). They may not work more than three hours on a school day or eight hours on a nonschool day. They may not work more than 18 hours in a school week or 40 hours in a week when school is not in session.

The employer has agreed to comply with the FLSA in the future, provide time clocks or timesheets at all of the recreation establishments’ workstations, structure employee schedules in a manner that will minimize the likelihood of minors working more than eight hours a day, and ensure that managers monitor minors’ work hours to avoid any potential violations.

For more information about the child labor regulations, call the Wage and Hour Division’s toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243) or its New Orleans District Office at 504-589-6171. Information is also available on the Internet at

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