The children were NOT employees.
"Officials said the children were not paid . . . the children were visiting their parent" and therefore, were NOT employed by McDonalds.
You can question the parent's judgement, if you wish, but putting McDonalds in the headline and using their corporate logo is irresponsible click bait. Next up - parent forces child to clean her room! Illegal exploitation of child labor? Or good parenting?
It's as I see it, this McDonald's problem, it's a parenting problem. And I wouldn't judge the parent without knowing more about their situation.
But I'm also wondering where the line is.
We can thank labor unions for ending the child labor practices illustrated in the following slide show.
But when the Instacart delivery person has their 8 year old helping carry the groceries, is it cute or is it illegal?
When I lived in Orange, CA (the last time, hopefully) I had a guy turn up at my door with a lawn mower and offer to mow the lawns for $30. Mike was working more than full time in the waspy airy ancient garage and I couldn't push the lawn mower anymore after the time the lady tried to kill us with her car (metaphorically speaking).
The lawn wanted mowing so I said yes.
Flash forward - it's a few months later and he's mowing the lawns regularly for cheap - with just the lawn mower that he pushes around, and one day he shows up with a kid, about 8, who has a broom. He mows, the kid sweeps . . . something like that. Anyhow, I was very uncomfortable when I paid the guy - knowing that I was paying for child labor. So I told him I wasn't going to need his services anymore, that I was going to do it myself. Which was a lie. I got someone else. Someone with a business license. DOH.
So was I doing good, not being an illegal child labor employer? Or was I depriving that kid of a meal?