Understanding Child Labor
In America, Child labor is strictly prohibited which means children under the age of 18 years cannot be employed. While this holds good for organizations not to employee children, there are several children who deliver newspaper every day, who sell magazines at the stations, who help parents at their farm. Do these activities come under the scanner? We need to be very specific and clear in defining what entails child labor.
Legislation has been fairly clear on explaining further and making certain allowances for children to be allowed to work only in certain areas and under specific conditions.
If the child has a found a job and it requires him to drive a motor vehicle, it would be a problem with quite a few jurisdictions that have very clear boundaries and limits to defining what is allowable and what is not.
Children need to be over 16 years of age to be able to qualify to apply for a driving license. The child labor laws also prohibit children below 16 years of age in most of the states to take up jobs that involve driving motor vehicle. So under both counts minors would have to wait to become 17 years old to be able to take up the job and the license.
The child labor laws are laid down detailing the conditions, the situations and the kinds of jobs along with timelines that the children can be engaged in legally and also specifies where they cannot be engaged. Children for example may not be allowed to serve in any public place beyond office hours and definitely not on night shifts.
All the states are very diligent and take extra care to ensure the labor laws are complied with. Children cannot be employed to work at nights and work continuously beyond 8 hours. The conditions at place of work have to be conducive for children to be employed.
The child protection legislations are explicit in detailing and guiding managements not to employ children where there is a chance of likely danger to the safety of the child or the situations are likely to be dangerous to his health. Children therefore cannot be made to work near fire, explosives, water or climb up on roof tops to work etc.
Should your require more information about the laws in a particular state, you could check the government website or contact a local employment attorney.