US Department of Labor finds Palm Coast resort operator denied employee private space to express milk for newborn, as federal law requires
finds Palm Coast resort operator denied employee private space to ... US Department of Labor
Palm Coast Resort and Spa Violates Federal Laws on Workplace Accommodations and Child Labor
The U.S. Department of Labor has determined that a Palm Coast resort and spa, operating as Hammock Beach Golf Resort and Spa, violated federal laws regarding workplace accommodations for workers who need to pump breast milk for their infants. The employer also violated federal child labor laws by employing children between the ages of 14 and 15 to work longer hours than permitted by law.
Violation of Workplace Accommodations for Breastfeeding Mothers
The Wage and Hour Division of the Department’s investigators found that supervisors employed by Aimbridge Employee Service Corp. failed to provide a private place for a worker to express milk for her newborn baby, in violation of Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) protections for employees to pump at work. When the employee requested a private place to pump breast milk, it took nearly four months for supervisors to identify a space, and they eventually offered a manager’s office. However, the office lacked privacy, as another worker entered the room while the mother was attempting to pump milk. In another incident, the employer reprimanded the employee for leaving workplace property without permission after she needed to leave to express milk for her child.
It is essential for employers to provide nursing mothers with a private place to pump at work, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public. By failing to do so, employers create barriers for women to balance their careers and their children’s needs.
Violation of Child Labor Laws
The investigation also revealed that the employer employed eight children between the ages of 14 and 15 in violation of child labor provisions of the FLSA. These violations included working more than three hours on a school day, more than eight hours on a non-school day, more than 40 hours in a week when school was not in session, and past 7 p.m. on school nights. As a result, the employer was assessed $6,810 in civil money penalties.
The Fair Labor Standards Act allows for developmental experiences for 14- and 15-year-old employees but restricts their working hours and times of day. Penalties are imposed when employers fail to comply with these regulations.
Importance of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
These violations highlight the significance of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goal 5: Gender Equality and Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth. By providing workplace accommodations for breastfeeding mothers and adhering to child labor laws, employers contribute to creating a more equitable and sustainable society.
Resources and Initiatives
The U.S. Department of Labor offers various resources to promote compliance with labor laws and protect workers’ rights:
- Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act: Extends workers’ rights to receive break time to pump in a private place at work.
- YouthRules! Initiative: Promotes positive and safe work experiences for teens by providing information about protections for young workers to youth, parents, employers, and educators.
The Wage and Hour Division has also published Seven Child Labor Best Practices for Employers to help employers comply with child labor laws.
For more information about the Fair Labor Standards Act and other laws enforced by the division, contact the agency’s toll-free helpline confidentially at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). The division protects workers regardless of their origin and can communicate with workers in more than 200 languages.
Download the agency’s new Timesheet App, available in English and Spanish for Android and Apple devices, to ensure accurate hours and pay.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor
SDGs, Targets, and Indicators
1. Which SDGs are addressed or connected to the issues highlighted in the article?
- SDG 5: Gender Equality
- SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
- SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities
2. What specific targets under those SDGs can be identified based on the article’s content?
- SDG 5.5: Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic, and public life.
- SDG 8.8: Protect labor rights and promote safe and secure working environments for all workers, including migrant workers, in particular women migrants, and those in precarious employment.
- SDG 10.2: By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic, and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion, or economic or other status.
3. Are there any indicators mentioned or implied in the article that can be used to measure progress towards the identified targets?
- Indicator for SDG 5.5: Proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments and local governments.
- Indicator for SDG 8.8: Proportion of informal employment in total employment.
- Indicator for SDG 10.2: Proportion of people living below 50 percent of median income, by age, sex, and disability.
Table: SDGs, Targets, and Indicators
|SDG 5: Gender Equality||Target 5.5: Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic, and public life.||Indicator: Proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments and local governments.|
|SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth||Target 8.8: Protect labor rights and promote safe and secure working environments for all workers, including migrant workers, in particular women migrants, and those in precarious employment.||Indicator: Proportion of informal employment in total employment.|
|SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities||Target 10.2: By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic, and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion, or economic or other status.||Indicator: Proportion of people living below 50 percent of median income, by age, sex, and disability.|
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