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A posed photo of two white women and a black man in a suit.
  1. Social Security and Retirement
  2. Retirement Age and Social Security
  3. Working at Home
  4. Longer Years of Retirement
  5. Employment trends
  6. Foreign workers in the United States
  7. Mexican Workers in the United States
  8. Workplace Safety Standards
  9. Work-related Injuries and Deaths
  10. Growth of Large Corporate Farming
  11. Union Membership Across the United States
  12. Laws Regarding Working Women
  13. Labor Contracts in the United States
  14. Right-to-Work Laws
  15. Public worker unions in the United States
  16. Unemployment insurance
  17. Equal Opportunity Employment Laws
  18. Workers’ Compensation
  19. Minimum Age for Agricultural Employment
  20. Minors in the Workplace
  21. Minimum Wage
  22. Employment of Persons with Disabilities
  23. Major Equal Employment Legislation in the U.S.
  24. Employment in the Service Sector
  25. Unemployment
  26. State’s Unique Worker’s Compensation Laws
  27. Life on Unemployment
  28. Minimum Wage and Poverty
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A  worker scoops fries at a fast food restaurant
A teenager working at a fast food restaurant in Detroit.
Photo from Jim West.
Minors in the Workplace
National legislation designed to protect working children was passed in 1938. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) regulates the use of child labor in non-agricultural industries. This law limits the age workers to sixteen and over, and if the job is dangerous, to 18 and over. It provides guidelines for the types of jobs 14 and 15-year-olds can perform, and requires employers to pay child workers at least minimum wage. The law also states that 14- and 15-year-olds may work outside of school hours for a maximum of 3 hours per day and 18 hours per week when school is in session and a maximum of 8 hours per day and 40 hours per week when school is not in session. This group is prohibited from working before 7 a.m. and after 7 p.m., except during summers, when they may work until 9 p.m. A 1997 investigation by the Associated Press found that “close to 4 percent of all 12 to 17-year-olds in any given week ere employed illegally.” The investigation further found that 290,200 children were employed unlawfully in 1996, including close to 60,000 under the age of 14 and 13,000 children who were working in factories that had repeated labor violations.
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