The safety of child workers on farms was dealt a harsh blow in April 19 when the Obama administration unexpectedly announced that it was withdrawing long-awaited occupational child safety rules for agriculture.
A teenager's first job is an important rite of passage for many, offering that first taste of adult responsibility; but young teenagers are not yet adults and need to be protected from the risks of dangerous work. Certain jobs and industries, especially farming and agriculture, pose unique safety concerns. Common sense dictates that young teens be protected from hazardous agricultural work, yet it’s this common sense reasoning that’s currently under attack.
These days, being a teenager isn’t easy. Teens’ overburdened schedules often include juggling afterschool activities, sports practice, and homework, which combined with working part time for extra spending money or to contribute to household expenses, leaves many teens feeling overworked, stressed, and stretched to the limit.
A century ago, the National Consumers League helped write and enact the first child labor laws in states across the country. Today, advocates are dismayed at efforts in two states to roll back protections for working youth.
Meet Samantha Guillen, a child farmworker since age 6, who is helping advocates fight for increased protections for our youngest child laborers in the fields.
It’s that time of the year. Teenagers are starting to think about their summer jobs. Where will they work? What kind of work will they do? What will it pay?
Advocates have been working for years to improve the working conditions for young farmworkers in the United States. In recent months, the CARE Act, the domestic priority for NCL's Child Labor Coalition, has been gathering steam. In all, 73 groups, representing a diverse cross-section of interests, have stood up and said it’s time to end the injustice of child labor in U.S. agriculture.
Considering a job in door-to-door sales? Teens looking for potential work may need help distinguishing legitimate door-to-door sales opportunities from dangerous traveling sales crews.
A few days before Thanksgiving in a small Virginia town called Poquoson, Frank Gornik, 14, was removing storm debris for his uncle’s company. The boy, a freshman in high school, fed branches into a wood chipper. He used a shovel to help force the branches and that shovel was grabbed by the machine and—in an instant—swallowed the boy and killed him.
Immigration officials raided the Agriprocessors kosher meat plant in Postville, Iowa, uncovering health and safety violations and illegal, dangerous employment of minors. NCL sent our child labor expert Reid Maki to Postville report on a community still reeling.