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Pennsylvania Child Labor

As many celebrated Labor Day today by having a day off work, others highlighted the worker protections that were achieved through the nation’s labor movement.

Labor Day is observed the first Monday of September and serves as an annual celebration of the efforts of America’s labor movement. But as many celebrate, officials also emphasize the protections that workers achieved throughout the century to protect the most vulnerable populations in the labor force – mainly children or those under 18.

In a press release, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry announces that they’ve seen an increase in Pennsylvania Child Labor Act cases referred for investigation.

“L&I has opened 403 child labor investigations compared to 107 cases during the same time period last year – a 276% increase.”

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, federal child labor provisions were introduced in 1938 in order to ensure that young workers do not jeopardize their safety, health, or educational opportunities. The Shapiro Administration states that:

“Pennsylvania’s Child Labor Act, enforced by L&I’s Bureau of Labor Law Compliance (BLLC), protects the health, safety, and welfare of minors employed in the Commonwealth by limiting employment in certain establishments and occupations, restricting the hours of work, regulating work conditions, and requiring work permits for children hired to fill a position.”

Specifically those laws state that no minors may work more than six consecutive days, they must be provided a 30-minute meal period and they must be paid at least minimum wage, which is currently $7.25 per hour. Children under age 14 may not be employed in any occupation.

If you’d like to learn more about PA’s child labor laws or would like to file a complain, visit the Department of Labor and Industry’s website.

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