Child Labor Laws
What Jobs Can Youth Have?
Except for farm work and work in the entertainment industry, 14 is the minimum legal age for a child to start working. In addition, youth under the age 18 who have not graduated from high school are required to attend school a minimum of 4 hours per week in addition to having a job.
The following are some rules that apply to youth of different ages:
14- and 15-year-olds
- Can work up to 3 hours on a school day, Monday through Friday, and 18 hours during a
- Can work up to 8 hours a day on a non-school day, or 40 hours in a non-school week.
- Cannot work during school hours.
- Cannot work before 7am or after 7pm, except from June 1 through Labor Day when evening hours are extended to 9pm.
- Cannot work in any manufacturing, processing, mining, construction, warehouse operations, and many restrictions apply around cooking.
Cannot work in any of the 17 hazardous occupations as listed by the Secretary of Labor.
16- and 17-year-olds
- Can work up to 4 hours on a school day, Monday through Friday, and 28 hours during a
- Can work up to 8 hours a day on a non-school day, or 48 hours in a non-school week.
- Can work between 5am and 10pm, which may be extended to one-half hour past midnight on nights preceding non-school days.
- Can work in any occupation except those declared hazardous by the Secretary of Labor.
How much should youth be paid?
- All workers in San Francisco must be paid at least the minimum wage of $10.55 per hour(1/1/13)
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Teen Job Search Tips - Exploring Options and Finding Teen Jobs
A teen job search includes several steps. A teen will first need to explore options and decide what type of job they are interested in. The next step is to get working papers, if necessary, and to learn how to fill out a job application or write a resume. Then it will be time to start a job search.
Before You Start a Teen Job Search
Before you start looking for a job, it is important to take some time to decide what you want to do. Even though you may not have experience, there are a variety of positions available for teens.
For example, if you love animals, check with local veterinarians to see if they are hiring. If you'd prefer working with children, check with your local YMCA (many have after-school child care programs and summer camps) or child care centers. Fast food restaurants and retail establishments rely on workers without experience and are willing to train new employees. Local libraries often hire teens to help put away books. During the summer, amusement parks and summer camps offer a variety of summer jobs for teens.
Take some time to explore options. Keep in mind that your first few jobs will provide a good opportunity to find out what you want to do - and what you don't. Review this list of teen job options to get an idea of the type of jobs that teens are likely to get hired for.
Make sure your paperwork is in order. In some states, if you're under eighteen, you may need to obtain working papers (officially called Employment/Age Certificates) in order to legally be able to work. You will want to get them ahead of time so you will be ready to start work once you're hired.
Teen Job Search Tips
Getting a Part-Time Job
Here's how to prepare for a teen job search, along with tips and strategies for teens looking for a summer or part time job. These tips cover the gamut from how to get ready to job hunt, to how to apply, and how to follow up.
Applying for a Job
This is the information you will need to complete a job application. Practice filling out a sample application so you will know what you need to include when you do apply.
Teen Resume Writing Tips
Many teen job seekers think they don’t need a resume or don’t have anything to include on a resume. That’s not the case. Even though a resume isn’t required for a lot of teen jobs, a resume can bolster your chances of getting hired.
Writing Your First Resume
Depending on the type of position you are applying for, you may need a resume. Here's how to write your first resume, and what you can include on it even if you haven't had a "real" job before.
Teen Job Search Sites
Here are a selection of job sites for teens, plus tips for searching them and information on where else to look for teen jobs. You will also want to use other resources, since all jobs won't be listed online.
Before Accepting a Job Offer
There are good jobs for teens and there are not-so-good and even awful jobs for teens. Before you say "yes" to a job offer, make sure the company is legitimate. Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if there have been complaints.
Be aware that the Department of Labor has rules and regulations about when teens can, and can't work, as well as what type of job you can do. Make sure the employer is complying with the law.
Decide whether this is a job you really want to do. Don't accept it if you don't feel comfortable with the work, with the environment, or with the boss or other employees. If this doesn't work out, there will be another offer. Consider whether the hours will fit into your school and activity schedule.
Be Prepared to Work
I sometimes work with young people who think that they can tell their supervisor when they want to work and what they are going to do on the job. They think they can say that they don't want to work on Saturday because they're rather go skiing or to the beach. Or they don't want to do a particular part of the job because it's not much fun or because it's boring.
It usually doesn't work that way. Your boss is going to give you a work schedule and you are going to be expected to be there when you are scheduled to work. At some companies, if you can't work your shift you are even expected to find a replacement to cover it. Unfortunately, some jobs, especially entry-level ones, are boring. Use the experience as a way to learn what you enjoy doing and what you don't.
When the Job Doesn't Work Out
You're not really going to know if the job is the right job for you, until you try it. It might not be what you expected or it might just not be the job for you. If it doesn't work out it's not the end of the world. Keep in mind that you won't have to do this job forever and if it's not working out you can leave - as long as you give appropriate notice. Be upfront with your employer and review these guidelines before you quit.
Think of a teen job search as a process not a one-shot deal. It's a way to gain work experince, make money and, to explore options for the future and even a way to meet new people and have fun!
What to Do When You're Out of Sick Days
You wake up for work, only to realize that the stuffy nose and sore throat you had last night have gotten worse. Or alternatively, you wake up feeling fine, but your child comes in to tell you that they aren't feeling well.
When you've run out of sick days, your best options are to call your supervisor--to find out your options at work, and to call your doctor -- to find out if there's anyway to feel better faster.
You head to the phone to call in sick. But before calling your supervisor, you realize you've exhausted your supply of sick days. What should you do?
Given the variety of workplace situations, what you can do may vary. But your best option, whether you're sick or you're child is, is to fill out a form for the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.
"A lot of my families who have regular employment will have an FMLA [Family and Medical Leave Act] form in place on the chart," said Dr. Diane E. Pappas, an associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Virginia.
"This may be one way for the parents to have their job protected, and we do this a lot," she said. "It's a fairly broad act."
The act covers people who work for the government, educators and people in companies with more than 50 employees. Enacted in 1993, it allows an employee to take up to 12 weeks off during a 12-month period to care for themselves or an ill child if they are taking care of them. However, that time off is unpaid.
"There is job protection that's afforded to the employee," said Ken Cope, an absence management practice leader at Hewitt LCG, a disability and absence management firm.
In the last 24 months, Cope noted, some states have enacted legislation to help employees when they need to miss work for illness or other personal reasons, which can include domestic violence or taking care of an injured family member who served in the military. The act recently expanded to include that situation.
"A lot of legislation is taking place at the state level to address this same issue," he said.
Cope notes that employees who are out for a certain period (typically more than seven days) can start using short-term disability leave, but that would not apply for an absence of a few days.
But while needing to take a day off may not cost you your job, doctors are quick to emphasize that prevention is the most important step, and those can be taken now.
While you may be able to tough out a cold in the office, that isn't likely to happen with the flu.
"If you had influenza, you wouldn't feel good enough to go to work," said Dr. Eric Larson, executive director of group health at the Center for Health Studies in Seattle.
For that reason, although it is not 100 percent effective, doctors say the most important step to take is getting a flu shot as soon as possible -- before flu season gets under way.
"This year, there should be a record amount of flu vaccine available," said Dr. Sandra Fryhofer, a general internist in Atlanta and past president of the American College of Physicians who currently serves on its Adult Immunization Advisory Board.
Fryhofer received her first flu vaccine shipment in August.
But even once you have the flu, there are steps you can take.
"People who have true flu, if they call their doctor within the onset of the symptoms, they can actually get an antiviral medication," Larson said.
That medication can lessen the severity of the symptoms and the length of the illness.
But communication with your doctor -- or your child's doctor -- should help you make the determination of what you need to do.
"A febrile [feverish] child can't go back to day care or a baby-sitting situation," Pappas said.
Those children usually have to be home for 24 hours, and while parents may be able to find a private baby sitter or work for a place that has care for sick children, those places are few and far between, Pappas said.
"A lot of families don't have extended family nearby," she said.
In that case, the Family and Medical Leave Act may be your only option.
Pappas notes that she has written many notes for parents when they need to stay home to take care of their child.
If the illness is your own and you decide to make the trek into the office, there are a few ways to keep your illness from spreading to your co-workers.
Fryhofer recommends keeping an alcohol-based hand gel with you to eliminate germs, as well as using a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
"Don't shake hands," she added. "If you shake hands with someone, you're going to spread that."
Fryhofer also recommends using phone and e-mail as much as possible, to avoid physical contact with co-workers.
And there is the obvious.
"The most important thing to prevent spreading is, wash your hands. Everyone else in the workplace should wash their hands too," Larson said.
Of course, what happens with your absences is ultimately dependent on your company. But having a sick employee come in isn't ideal for the company either.
"If you're sick, your employer should really not want you at the work place," Fryhofer said.
And some companies are beginning to become aware of that.
Some employers are promoting a virtual work force, using videoconferencing or other technologies to allow employees to work from home when they're sick, according to Cope.
"Employees are encouraged, if they have the ability to work at home, to actually do that," he said. "I think it does make good business sense, if the employee can be accommodated in that fashion."
Ultimately, said Cope, the key is to be in touch with your supervisor or manager of human relations.
"The very first thing I would say is to keep the lines of communication open ... to see what options are available," he said.
ABC News Medical Unit
Sept. 9, 2008
Examples of Resumes
Resumes courtesy of JobWeb. For more resume samples and free information on interviewing, see http://www.jobweb.com/resumes_interviews.aspx?id=896
Getting a Job
How can I find a job?
In order to get a job, you must go out and look for job offers. Once you find a job offer you must fill out an application. Make sure you fill out all the correct information. Then turn the application in on time. You can also find a job at job fairs or post your resume on the Internet; employers can find you this way.
As youth the only benefits you get from working are getting pay, gaining skills, getting job experience, and getting resources and references.
- Always arrive 15 minutes early before an interview.
- Dress casual or professional.
- Don't ask questions that are irrelevant to the job or organization.
- Relax and smile.
- Ask questions the interviewer can answer.
- Always be yourself.
- Go in prepared. Do your background research through the Internet or newspaper about the company, or information on their products, services or the person you are meeting with.
- Reflect on ways you could contribute to the company.
- Have fun and relax. If you are tense, you will give the impression that you are uncomfortable.
- Breathe deeply before you start the interview.
- Always eat before an interview so you won't be hungry.
- Do not "bad mouth" former employers, employees, or companies.
- Do not tell lies.
How to make a resume?
On your resume you must include your name, address, phone number, email address, objective (what position are you applying for), skills, work experience, and it is recommended that you included a reference, but not required.