Find out which law prohibited child labor and the conditions that were put in place to ensure that children were not being exploited.
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The Fair Labor Standards Act
In 1938, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was passed. The FLSA established standards for minimum wage and overtime pay, which applied to employees in interstate commerce and in businesses that produced goods for interstate commerce. The FLSA also prohibited the employment of children under the age of 16 in interstate commerce and in businesses that produced goods for interstate commerce.
The History of Child Labor
In the United States, the history of child labor begins in the late 1800s, when a wave of immigration and industrialization changed the face of work and families. In response to public outcry and pressure from organized labor, state and federal lawmakers began passed laws aimed at protecting working children. The first federal child labor law, The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), was passed in 1938.
Today,Child labor is defined as work that is too hazardous or Interferes with a child’s schooling, that keeps a child from attending school, or that Harmfully affects a child’s health or well-being. Federal and state laws regulating child labor vary, but most follow the guidelines set forth in the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The FLSA establishes standards for minimum wage, overtime pay, record keeping, and youth employment. Under the FLSA, employers must obtain a certificate from the U.S. Department of Labor before they can hire workers under the age of 14 to work in non-agricultural jobs. Employers who violate child labor laws are subject to civil and criminal penalties.
Child Labor in the United States
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 is a federal law that establishes minimum wage, overtime pay, record keeping, and child labor standards affecting full-time and part-time workers in the private sector and in federal, state, and local governments.
The FLSA sets standards for employees that are not covered by another federal law or by a union contract. The Act does not apply to independent contractors or to most religious, charitable, educational, or political organizations. In addition, certain jobs may be exempt from the minimum wage and overtime provisions of the Act if they meet certain tests regarding job duties and if they are paid on a salary basis at not less than $455 per week.
The Fair Labor Standards Act also establishes restrictions on the employment of children under the age of 16 years old. In general, children under the age of 14 cannot be employed except as newspaper delivery persons or in jobs specifically exempted by child labor regulations. Youth between the ages of 14 and 16 can be employed for certain jobs after school hours and during vacation periods if certain conditions are met.
International Child Labor Laws
There are many laws that prohibit child labor. The most well-known is probably the International Labor Organization’s Convention on the Rights of the Child, which was adopted in 1989. This convention sets the minimum age for employment at 15 years old. However, countries are allowed to ratify the convention and set a higher minimum age for employment, as long as it is not lower than 15 years old.
The Dangers of Child Labor
In the United States, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 is a federal law that sets standards for minimum wage and overtime pay, as well as for child labor. The FLSA covers most private sector and some public sector employees, and is enforced by the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor.
The FLSA’s child labor provisions are designed to protect working children from hazardous conditions and practices that can jeopardize their health, safety, and well-being. These provisions also aim to prevent working children from being exploited or taking jobs away from adults who need them.
The FLSA’s child labor provisions apply to any individual under the age of 18 who is employed by an covered entity, with some exceptions for certain types of jobs and businesses.
The Impact of Child Labor
The impact of child labor is widespread and often devastating. Children who are forced to work long hours in hazardous conditions are at risk of injuries, illness, and even death. In addition, they often miss out on vital schooling and opportunities to develop their skills and talents. As a result, they may never be able to reach their full potential.
In an effort to protect children from exploitation, many countries have passed laws prohibiting child labor. However, these laws are not always effective. In some cases, children are forced to work in secret or in remote areas where they are difficult to track or monitor. In other cases, families may rely on their children’s wages to survive and cannot afford to send them to school instead.
Despite the challenges, there has been some progress made in recent years. The number of children involved in child labor has decreased significantly since 2000, thanks in part to government initiatives and international programs that aim to eliminate the practice altogether.
Child Labor Today
In the United States, child labor laws vary from state to state. The federal government has also passed several laws to regulate child labor. The most recent federal law is the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA).
The FLSA sets standards for the hours that children can work and the types of jobs they can do. For example, children under the age of 14 cannot work in most jobs. And, children under the age of 18 cannot work in hazardous occupations.
However, there are some exceptions to these rules. For instance, children as young as 12 can work in certain agricultural jobs with their parent’s permission. And, children under 18 can work in some non-hazardous jobs with a special permit from the Department of Labor.
Despite these laws, child labor is still a problem in the United States. Each year, thousands of children are injured or killed while working. Child labor also often prevents kids from going to school and getting an education.
How to Help End Child Labor
Most people are unaware that child labor still exists today. It is a common problem in many developing countries, where children are forced to work in dangerous and harmful conditions. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), there are 168 million child workers around the world. That means that nearly one in every ten children between the ages of 5 and 17 is working.
While it is hard to compared different countries’ statistics on child labor, Uzbekistan, Haiti, and Angola have the highest rates of child labor, with more than 20% of children between the ages of 5 and 17 working. On the other end of the spectrum, countries like Norway, Sweden, and Denmark have some of the lowest rates of child labor, with less than 1% of children working.
The United States has made great strides in reducing child labor over the past few centuries. In 1916, congress passed the Keating-Owen Act, which was the first federal law to regulate child labor. This law prohibited interstate commerce of goods produced by factories that employed children under 14 years old. Unfortunately, this law was later struck down by the Supreme Court.
It wasn’t until 1938 that Congress passed another law regulating child labor. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) established national minimum wage and overtime pay standards, as well as prohibitions against most employment of minors under 18 years old. The FLSA also created the Wage and Hour Division within the Department of Labor to enforce these standards.
Today, there are still many children around the world who are forced to work in dangerous and harmful conditions. However, laws like the FLSA have helped to reduce child labor in developed countries like the United States. You can help make a difference by supporting organizations that work to end child labor around the world, such as Save the Children or World Vision International.
Child Labor Quiz
How much do you know about child labor? Take our quiz to find out!
1. What was the first law passed in the United States that addressed child labor?
A. The Child Labor Act of 1916
B. The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938
C. The Keating-Owen Act of 1916
D. The Child Labor Amendment of 1924
2. Which of the following was NOT a reason why children were often employed in the 1800s and early 1900s?
A. They were small enough to work in tight spaces.
B. They were considered to be less likely than adults to get injured on the job.
C. They generally required less pay than adults.
D. They were not covered by labor laws at that time.
3. How many hours per week could a child under the age of 16 legally work in the United States in 1916?
A. 10 hours
B. 16 hours
C. 48 hours
D. 60 hours
4. In what year did Congress pass the Fair Labor Standards Act, which set standards for minimum wage and maximum hours worked, as well as prohibiting most employment of children under the age of 18?
A.. 1938 B.. 1935 C.. 1952 D.. 1947 5. True or false: Child labor is still common in the United States today.
A. True B False
Resources for Further Reading
Below are some resources for further reading on the topic of child labor.
-Child Labor: A Global View, by Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138), International Labour Organization
-Convention on the Rights of the Child, by United Nations General Assembly
-The Worst Forms of Child Labor, by Hazardous Substances and Articles in Contact with Children Convention, 1999 (No. 170), International Labour Organization