Build-A-Bear Workshop Accused of Violating Child Labor Laws

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Build a Bear Storefront

WASHINGTON DC – Beloved toy store Build-A-Bear Workshop is in hot water this week as parents and human rights activists have accused the American retailer of violating child labor laws by forcing children to assemble stuffed animals. The Wage-Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor has been investigating reports that the company creates “shops” in malls throughout America where innocent children build tailor-made dolls and stuffed toys for public consumption. “Sure they make great toys, but at what cost?” asks local mother Shesa Mamabear. “If ‘handcrafted’ means ‘child crafted’, then I want no part of it. Child labor is wrong, in ANY circumstance.”

After thorough investigation into the sinister operation, The United States Secretary of Labor Thomas E Perez offered a harsh assessment of the horrific working conditions in the Build-A-Bear stores. “The store itself is bright and colorful to attract unsuspecting children, but the whole place is really set up like a factory floor. There the ‘workers’ pre-approve an outer shell, physically carry the toy to the stuffing station, actually fluff the stuffed animal, and add accessories. And are the children paid for this skilled labor? Oh no, quite the contrary. The child’s family actually pays for the stuffed animal that they labored to create. I tell you, the whole thing is backwards, and it’s sick. We’re doing everything in our power to shut it down.”

When asked for a comment, Build-a-Bear founder Maxine Clark seemed confused, “Well, yes, we did mean for this to be an interactive experience. We thought the ability to build your own teddy bear would make for a more special toy.” But parents aren’t buying it. Mrs. Mamabear, for one, will not be satisfied until Clark and her Build-A-Bear cohorts are all locked up just like the adorable Jailbird Bear. “It’s 2016, people. When will the taking of childhood innocence stop? We’d like to think of ourselves as a civilized country. We’d like to think that child labor only takes place in poor third world countries. But then you walk into your local mall to find this horror show going on. These barbearians need to be put away.”