McDonald's Israel will have to end the employment of 800 Jewish youths on Saturdays as of this weekend, due to the increased enforcement of Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor inspectors against the employment of youths on Saturdays. If the inspectors find youths working on Saturday, the employer is liable to a NIS 35,000 fine.
McDonald's Israel said that it has no intention of closing its fast-food outlets where youths are employed on Saturdays, but that it will employ non-Jews, who are allowed to work on Saturday by law. It added that it would use every means at its disposal to fight for the right of youths who want to work on Saturday to do so. Workers on Saturday earn 150% of the regular hourly wage.
McDonald's Israel slammed the Ministry of Industry's decision to tighten enforcement on the employment of youths. "The law, which will come into effect this Saturday, will come into effect even though we've been fighting it for 17 years," it said. "We intend to petition the High Court of Justice to change the law. This is religious coercion which should vanish from the world.
Omri, a McDonald's manager in central Israel said, "The teenagers want to work on Saturday. We've begun signing employees on a protest that they want to work, and their parents approve. This decision is a serious blow to the branches. This week, we'll bring in non-Jews from the north to work at the branch."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com