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Child Labor Laws? Who Needs 'Em! by poasterchild Child Labor Laws? Who Needs 'Em! by poasterchild
Please disseminate widely, thank you! This does not give permission to alter or claim credit for this re-mixed work, for which I retain all copyrights. The original illustration is in the public domain.

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Republican governors and state lawmakers, who succeeded this year in curbing union powers, are pushing to revise their child-labor laws to help companies such as groceries get workers. Wisconsin will let employers treat teenagers as adults in pay and hours, and Maine lawmakers want to let companies keep teens working longer hours.

The moves pose a challenge to child-labor laws, established at the federal level in 1938 to protect youths from working long hours on dangerous machinery instead of going to school. Republicans and businesses easing the restrictions as part of their effort to cut back government regulation while giving teenagers a chance to learn valuable work habits.

“How come it’s OK, even exemplary, for teenagers to spend 40 hours a week in sports, glee club, chorus, debate society, or any other select activity sanctioned by the social elite, but if you are a teenager who wants to work or needs to work, there are limits?” Dick Grotton, president of the Maine Restaurant Association, based in Augusta, said in an interview. “Kids working is not a bad thing.”

The U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act sets a minimum age of 14 for most work and bars children under 18 from hazardous jobs. The law remained intact after the Supreme Court knocked down a challenge in 1941, and its champions say Gingrich is leading an effort to undermine it. Some states such as Maine have laws that exceed federal requirements, and Republican legislators are targeting the state regulations.

‘Anti-Worker Policies’

“This is part of a coordinated effort by conservatives across the country to use the economic crisis to shred critical worker protections,” Anne Thompson, a policy analyst at the National Employment Law Project, a Washington-based group that advocates for worker rights, said in an interview.

Romney’s Position

“To have kids work in the library and to help out in school and to clean the blackboards does not require changing our child-labor laws,” Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who is the presumptive Republicans nominee for President, said during an Iowa debate earlier this year.
Wal-Mart, McDonald’s

Easing child-labor laws would most benefit companies that employ low-wage workers, including retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and operators of fast-food restaurants such as McDonald’s, according to Thompson of the National Employment Law Project.

Greg Rossiter, a spokesman for Wal-Mart, declined to comment. Danya Proud, a spokeswoman for McDonald’s, didn’t respond to phone and e-mail requests for comment.

Representative George Miller of California, the top Democrat on the House Labor and Workforce Committee, said in an interview that attacks on child-labor laws are about “demonizing the poor.”

“A kid with a parent working two low-wage jobs to pay the rent knows what a work ethic is,” he said. “She doesn’t need any more hard knocks from the likes of Newt Gingrich. What she needs is access to great education and her parents need a vibrant job market. You get neither when you repeal child-labor laws and replace Mom and Dad with underage children.”

In Maine, Republicans lawmakers rolled back child-labor laws this year, with backing from Governor Paul LePage. Legislation increased the number of hours teenagers could work and let companies pay them a “training wage.” Under the pay measure, workers younger than 20 would earn $5.25 an hour, less than the state’s $7.50 an hour minimum wage.

Working at 14

“I don’t see why kids can’t go to work when they are 14 or 15 -- it makes no sense to me,” LePage said in an October interview with the Augusta-based Capitol News Service.

Wisconsin rolled back state laws this year limiting the hours 16- and 17-year-olds can work. Wisconsin and Maine changed their laws in response to lobbying by groups representing restaurants and grocery stores, which said restricting teenage labor burdened businesses with cumbersome paperwork.
“It wasn’t like they were trying to overwork these kids or create a sweatshop,” said Michelle Kussow, a lobbyist for the Wisconsin Grocers Association. “They just want to give kids that great first opportunity you get in a grocery store.”

In Missouri, Republican State Senator Jane Cunningham sought unsuccessfully this year to eliminate a ban on employment of children younger than 14. She doesn’t plan to try again, according to Kit Crancer, Cunningham’s chief of staff.

In Utah, first-term Republican U.S. Senator Mike Lee, who is supported by groups affiliated with the Tea Party, posted a video on his YouTube channel, saying the federal child-labor law violates the Constitution.

The federal law is “an interference with how parents chose to raise their kids,” he said.
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:iconhappyarequipe:
HappyArequipe Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2014
sweet...this is great poster. 
Reply
:iconpoasterchild:
poasterchild Featured By Owner Aug 29, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Thanks so much.
Reply
:iconquamp:
quamp Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2012
Who knows where society would be had this been outlawed earlier? Life expectancy is much lower for people who start work before age 16.
However, as long as someone can profit from it, there will be someone who will be in favor of dumb ideas.
Reply
:iconrozax:
Rozax Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2012
I'm glad this is being evaluated. Thanks to "stranger danger" and "no child left behind", I feel I was seriously cheated in my childhood. My parents bought into "stranger danger", so I wasn't allowed outside after dark (which is a problem, in Wisconsin; thank God we weren't living in Alaska), which meant I couldn't hold a job, and I wasn't allowed to babysit unless one of them was home. What could they do for me when they were way over in our own little abode? No idea; but it made them feel better. And the less said on NCLB, the better – that's another (yet oddly complementary, when you get down to it) big ol' hot ball of wax.

As for the minimum wage...that's disgusting. You are a legal adult at the age of 18, and in this day and age, we are expected to be in college. Tell me, how cheap do they think tuition is, let alone all those books and materials? Oh, right...FAFSA. Thanks. I'm so happy to be paying off student loans for the next decade, because I couldn't earn enough while I was in school. I wasn't planning on putting that money toward anything useful, anyway.
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:iconxopumpkinlovexo:
xoPumpkinLovexo Featured By Owner Jun 19, 2012
This is ridiculous! Everyone under 20?! What about the people just turning 18 that have to make ends meet? What about TEENAGE MOMS?!
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:icontheamazingneard:
theamazingneard Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2012
A teenager shouldn't become a mother unless someone can support her financially.
Reply
:iconxopumpkinlovexo:
xoPumpkinLovexo Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2012
right, otherwise let those bitches starve. *SARCASM*
Reply
:icontheamazingneard:
theamazingneard Featured By Owner Jul 11, 2012
They shouldn't have a kid if they aren't ready. Don't have sex if you aren't ready, stops the issue.
Reply
:iconxopumpkinlovexo:
xoPumpkinLovexo Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012
So the world you would like is completely without compassion or understanding? No one's allowed to make mistakes in their life or else? I pray to almighty God that you or your daughter will go to some frat party, get drunk, and knocked up by some douche with no money that leaves you flat so you can eat your PUTRID words.
Reply
:icontheamazingneard:
theamazingneard Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2012
I don't drink, so that won't happy, nor do I have a daughter. "Compassion" as you want it goes against nature, Darwinism is the way. If you reject nature, you are being stupid.
Reply
:iconxopumpkinlovexo:
xoPumpkinLovexo Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2012
btw, I read your theory about how countries with less than 80% white populations suck. I was just wondering, honestly, how Ireland with its 25% unemployment rate and Finland with it's financial crises factor into this equation? Or should I say, how did they manage to factor out? :iconimhappyplz:
Reply
:icontheamazingneard:
theamazingneard Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012
The EU fucked them over, and the overall faults of the liberal system of Ireland. Finland is doing fairly well right now.
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconxopumpkinlovexo:
xoPumpkinLovexo Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2012
Part of the survival of a race depends on its members being able to take care of on another...

You're right, if an asteroid hits the Earth, fuck everyone, I'm saving myself. That worked for the dinosaurs! Oh wait...no it didn't...:roll:
Reply
:icontheamazingneard:
theamazingneard Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012
Yes, they should take care of eachother, but a teenager shouldn't become a mother unless she can take care of herself. It's as simple as that, can't take care of the kid, don't have it.
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconpurplephoneixstar:
PurplePhoneixStar Featured By Owner Jun 19, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You would think if a law had been around since 1938 that isn't hurting anyone, why would you fuck with it.
Reply
:iconurvogel7:
urvogel7 Featured By Owner Jun 19, 2012
These people are scum. I can look the other way at letting kids work, but dropping their minimum wage is flat out exploitation. While we're at it, why don't we let them dig for coal, since we're using pre-victorian english sensibilities here.
Reply
:iconlilili44:
LILILI44 Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
With all these laws, ideas, and politicians. It makes me worried for the generations ahead.
Reply
:iconthe-navigators:
The-Navigators Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
As someone who is still under 18, my feelings on labor laws are: 99% of them I agree with.

The paperwork does sorta bug me, it's one more thing that makes me vs. some 27 year old going after the same job, thanks to the crappy economy look, slightly more attractive.
In Ohio, they require a physical before issuing a work permit, which is the Ohio athletic form, primarily dealing with stuff that would be an issue if you did something physical. Yet, most of those jobs are barred from anyone under 18...


Also you forgot Newt's use kids as janitors to replace adults idea.
That one pissed me off.

This information though, is scaring me, this is getting out of control...
Reply
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
“To have kids work in the library and to help out in school and to clean the blackboards does not require changing our child-labor laws,” '


Libraries are being shut down, and how many blackboards need 13 year old employees to clean them?
What a pathetic way to try and sell child slavery.


In Maine, Republicans lawmakers rolled back child-labor laws this year, with backing from Governor Paul LePage. Legislation increased the number of hours teenagers could work and let companies pay them a “training wage.” Under the pay measure, workers younger than 20 would earn $5.25 an hour, less than the state’s $7.50 an hour minimum wage.



Isn't it nice how kids get handed to big business with lower pay up to 20 years of age!
20?! Are you kidding me?

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:iconstarlow-ftw:
Starlow-FTW Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
You give the average Republican in congress too much credit. They wouldn't have the guts to do anything like this.
Reply
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
They sure would.
Reply
:iconstarlow-ftw:
Starlow-FTW Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
And as a conservative, I feel like that isn't recognized enough.
Reply
:iconebolabears:
EbolaBears Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2012
:iconsaluteplz:
Reply
:icondestroyerase:
DestroyErase Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So on one side of the spectrum the Republican party stands for allowing young adults work for longer periods of time as puppets for the giant detestable war machine called America.

On the other side of the spectrum, Democrats stand for promoting the thorough moral manipulation and thought decimation of children through public education. Which of course will help lead these young adults into assimilating into their destined role as puppets for the giant detestable war machine called America.


The people of America are expendable resources under the illusion of power. Their government already has them set up to fail, lol.
Reply
:iconegnoramus:
Egnoramus Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Student Digital Artist
well that'll work... "why cut back on education and get ourselves enflamed when we can cut back child labor laws and through companies in the fireline for taking away education?"

ugh.... i honestly don't need to say it.... but the Republicans are REALLY disconnected -_______-;
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:iconlucketa:
LuckETA Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Republicans are honestly disgusting.

I don't mind other kids working as like a clerk at a book store or something like that, as long as school came first.
But they (Republicans) think its perfectly OK for CHILDREN to be getting out of school and doing dangerous and hazardous jobs not to mention that when there are thousands of unemployed ADULTS who would line up though the door for that job.

Just another way to send a generation to poverty, misery and rampant crime.
Reply
:icondravazed:
Dravazed Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
Tweeted.
Reply
:iconladyrhianwriter:
LadyRhianwriter Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012
Because you don't NEED schooling when you are just going to end up working in places like those for the rest of your life anyway... :P
Reply
:iconmikgeta:
Mikgeta Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Student Writer
It would be cool to have a job, like, a book store clerk or something, but of course,Im too young
Reply
:iconscholarwarrior-lad:
scholarwarrior-lad Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Messy.
Reply
:iconpoasterchild:
poasterchild Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
What does that mean?
Reply
:iconscholarwarrior-lad:
scholarwarrior-lad Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
The issue is kind of messy. I get angry when they want people to go straight to work and quit school early but on the other hand if somebody is too poor to go to school they might not have much choice. So trying to repeal child labor laws would likely you know :headache: exploit the poor harder than other socioeconomic classes.
Reply
:iconpoasterchild:
poasterchild Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
That's right. It is exploitation, pure and simple, and yet another tactic to put downward pressure on the wages paid to adults who must work for a living to support themselves and their families. I went to work when I was 14 for 75 cents an hour, in a job my Dad arranged for me, which enabled me to learn a lot about life. But I didn't have to work -- my parents earned decent salaries and were able to send four kids to college. That's not the same for a poor single mother today; if she is forced to send her kid to work rather than to school, we've consigned yet another generation to poverty, misery, and crime -- it's a pipeline to prison, or worse.
Reply
:iconscholarwarrior-lad:
scholarwarrior-lad Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yup. Downward mobility to constrain people's choices even more. >_<
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