Proactive compliance campaign - Employing children in the fast food industry
The fast food industry is a major employer of young workers. The Department of Commerce is currently undertaking a proactive compliance campaign in the fast food industry across the Perth metropolitan area to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Children and Community Services Act 2004 which regulates the employment of children under the age of 15 years.
All employers in Western Australia must comply with the provisions of the Children and Community Services Act.
As part of the current campaign, Commerce has contacted over 500 fast food employers and provided information to the head offices of franchise groups.
Employers are being provided with an Employer Information Pack on employing children in the fast food industry to assist store owners and managers ensure all employment arrangements comply with the child employment laws.
The Employer Information Pack includes:
- a fact sheet for employers that answers frequently asked questions about the employment of children in a shop, restaurant, fast food or takeaway food business
- a self-audit checklist tool to help employers to conduct a self-audit of compliance with the child employment laws
- a template form for gaining written permission from parents for the employment of children who are 13 or 14 years old
Following the education component of the campaign, selected employers will be required to provide employment records to Industrial Inspectors at the Department as evidence that children are not being employed in breach of the provisions of the Children and Community Services Act. If breaches are identified, the Department may initiate prosecution action in the Industrial Magistrates Court.
The Dpeartment has in the past prosecuted employers for allowing staff who are 13 or 14 years old to work after 10pm, and for employing staff under 13 years of age in fast food outlets.
More information on employing children in the fast food industry is available on the Employment of children laws - shop, restaurant, fast food or takeaway food business page.
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