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Child labor affects millions worldwide

Child labor laws here in Illinois
Child labor laws here in Illinois
Photo by Omar Havana/Getty Images

Child labor is not as severe an issue as it was a centuries ago, but it still affects millions of kids worldwide. Statistics from the International Labor Organization show that there are about 73 million children between ages 10 and 14 that work in economic activities throughout the world, and 218 million children working worldwide between the ages of 5 and 17. These figures do not even include domestic labor

And with the economic pressures on families throughout the US, children are taking jobs to help. If you are 14 or 15, you need a work permit here in Illinois and it prohibits types of work as well as limited hours so that children's education is not effected. Illinois WorkNet provides the following that identifies unacceptable jobs such as:

· Manufacturing
· Mining
· Processing
· Apparatus maintenance
· Machine maintenance
· Operation of power-driven machinery
· Operating motor vehicles
· Jobs that use ladders or scaffolds
· Work in freezers or meat coolers
· Sales outside of the business location (peddling)
· Warehouse
· Construction
Work rules for 14 & 15 year olds are:
· Cannot work more than six consecutive days in one week.
· Cannot work more than 48 hours in one week.
· Cannot work 24 hours in one week when school is in session
· Cannot work between 7PM and 7AM when school is in session. (9PM to 7AM from June 1 to Labor Day.)
· Cannot work more than 3 hours a day on school days
· Must have a 30-minute break if working more than 5 hours.
· Cannot work:
· As a public messenger, delivery service, bellboy in hotel or rooming house
· At a bowling alley, pool room, billiard room, skating rink, exhibition park or place of amusement, garage, filling station, service station
· In connection with power driven machinery
· Where intoxicating alcoholic liquors are served or sold for consumption or are manufactured

Please contact WorkNet for information concerning the process of getting a work permit and what you will need. Links are available to online applications or talking to a school counselor for more information.

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