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Equal Rights Division Newsletter - May 4, 2021

Applying for a jobIs your child looking for summer work?

Wisconsin Child Labor Laws provide valuable protections to minors in the workforce. If your child is looking for a summer job, they may be tempted to take the first paying gig that comes along. But before they do, make sure you both know their rights to avoid any trouble come summer.

The Problem

Your 15-year-old daughter applies to the local grocery store for the summer. During her interview, the store manager explains to your daughter that shifts vary from day to day but aren't typically longer than 4 or 5 hours. This is exactly what your daughter has been looking for, and she gladly accepts the position. After a few weeks, you notice that your daughter is working more than expected. She's scheduled almost entirely in the evening and, a few times, has worked until close. You also notice that when your daughter finally does get home, she's starving. When you discuss your concerns with her, your daughter tells you that she's made to stay late because they're short staffed, and she doesn't get a lunch because she's not a full-time employee.

Should you contact the Equal Rights Division?

The AnswerGrocery store worker

Wisconsin Child Labor Laws are designed to protect the life, health, safety, and welfare of minor workers. These laws prohibit minors under the age of 16 from working more than 8 hours per non-school day from June 1 through Labor Day outside the hours of 7 am and 9 pm. If your child accepts a summer position, but is made to work more than 8 hours per day or 40 hours per week, is made to work later than 9 pm, or is not given a 30 minute, duty-free meal period during a shift lasting more than 6 hours, you may want to contact the Equal Rights Division for further assistance.

Know Your Rights

Remember, Wisconsin Child Labor Laws are designed to protect minor workers. All minors under the age of 16 must obtain a Wisconsin minor work permit prior to starting employment. For more information on minor employment and work permits, contact the Equal Rights Division.

Equal Rights Officers are available to answer your employment discrimination questions. We take calls Monday through Friday between the hours of 7:45 AM and 4:30 PM. Madison: (608) 266-6860; Milwaukee: (414) 227-4384.

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