In the time of soaring prices, higher cost of living, and problems with employment, more and more people are seeking sources of livelihood to help them survive. That is why even the youth are trying to find ways on how to earn money. During the summer, young people in their breaks try to take advantage of their idle time by trying to find summer jobs that could help them earn more money that they need.
Prone to Abuse, Harassment, and Discrimination
However, given most young people’s naivety, they have the greater chances of being taken advantage of some employers that are preying on young, naïve people in need of jobs. Most of these poor employees barely know a thing or two about their rights and the legalities of working. And so, here are some of the things that a minor employee should be made aware of.
Minimum Allowed Age for Work
According to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), only minors 14 years old and above can do non-agricultural work. However these are the only jobs that children of all ages can perform without having problems with the law:
- Performing on TV, movies, and theatrical productions
- In businesses owned by their parents (exemptions include mining, manufacturing, and hazardous jobs)
- Babysitting or minor chores in a private home
- Homeworkers in gathering evergreens and making evergreen wreaths
It must be noted though that there are differing age requirements that apply in employing minors in agriculture. Furthermore, depending on the state, some state laws are made that changes the restrictions of age when it comes to employment of the youth.
As heavy labor can affect a minor’s development, one should also be mindful of the number of hours that a youth can be allowed to work. Here are the number of hours that a 14 and 15 year olds are limited to.
- Hours out of school
- 3 hours on days with school
- 18 hours for a week with school
- 8 hours on a day without school
- 40 hours for weeks without school, and
- Minors can only work from 7 am till 7pm except from June 1 up to Labor Day where the evening hours are extended up to 9 pm.
As for minors aged 16 years and older, the FLSA puts no limit in as far as the number of hours are concerned.
Minimum Wage and Work Permits
For the first 90 consecutive calendar days, youth workers aged 20 and below must be paid $4.25 per hour, which is the prevailing “Youth Minimum Wage”. After that, the FLSA says that they should be paid the full federal minimum wage. As for the work permits are concerned, youth workers are not required to have work permits or working papers. However, school counselors may be asked to provide a work permit is needed when a youth worker is applying for a job.
And so, to keep one from getting abused, harassed, and discriminated against by their employer and fall victim to their many ploys, one must make it a point to learn and understand these laws better, or ask the help of a California labor and employment law attorney to file charges against abusive employers taking advantage of the country’s young workers.