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8-year-old boy reported for seeking two child apprentices at lemonade stand

8-year-old boy reported for seeking two child apprentices at lemonade stand

A complaint was filed to the Alabama Labor Department claiming that their lemonade stand violated child labor laws

An Alabama mother and her eight-year-old son were reported to the state’s Labor Department after they tried to recruit kids to be a 'smiler' or 'greeter' at their lemonade stand.

Cristal Johnson posted on social media earlier this month that she and her son Cameron were seeking two children, aged between six and 10 in their neighbourhood, for a ‘one-day apprenticeship’ in July.

In the post, Johnson offered to pay the children $20 for a two-hour shift, with her main objective being teaching them 'business skills' at their stand, which was set up to support Cameron’s dream of going to Disney World.


Despite her good intentions, the mother revealed on Facebook that the Labor Department informed her that someone had reported their lemonade stand and claimed it violated child labor laws.

The Alabama authorities then told the respiratory therapist that the stand had to be shut down as they could have profited by selling cups of the drink.

She wrote on Facebook this week: “Although my heart was in the right place.. someone else's was not. I was reported to the Department of Labor for hiring minors!!!

“Some miserable soul thought it be a good idea to have it shut down, so with that being said.. the child event I was trying to have is cancelled!!”

“I think it is disgusting, hateful, and downright sad for a person to find negative in what I was trying to accomplish!” she continued.

“That person is no doubt reading this message, and this is for you: You CANNOT stop what is destined to be! You didn't win! All you did is make me figure out another way!”

In light of the furore, Johnson explained that she had put the callout after seeing the positive effect the stall had on Cameron and wanted to impart the same skills on other kids.

The pair were looking for two kids to be a 'smiler' or 'greeter' at the stand.
Cristal Johnson/Facebook

She told Fox & Friends First on Thursday: “I was trying to teach them exactly what I’m trying to teach my son, just how to handle money. Customer service skills. Teach the little boys how to shake hands correctly. And just little things like that.

“That’s all I was trying to accomplish.”

Johnson admitted that her own feelings were hurt by the report.

She concluded: “I was shocked. There’s no way a decent person would gather that I was trying to hire minors to do any type of work for me.”

Featured Image Credit: Facebook

Topics: News, US News, Food and Drink