Rep. Ryan Mackenzie (R-Berks/Lehigh) yesterday voted in favor of legislation to modernize Pennsylvania’s child labor laws, making them consistent with federal law and creating new guidelines for children working in the entertainment industry.
“As policy director for the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, I was involved in drafting this legislation, and I was pleased to cast my ‘yes’ vote on the House floor in favor of this important bipartisan measure,” said Mackenzie. “There are many positives that will come out of this legislation, including streamlining the process of obtaining a work permit for parents and minors, protecting children employed in the entertainment industry, and defending children from dangerous or exploitive working environments.”
To view a video of Mackenzie’s comments, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81NskdEP3sc&feature=plcp.
House Bill 1548 represents a complete rewrite of Pennsylvania’s Child Labor Law. It would clearly lays out minimum age requirements for employment, limitations on the number of hours a minor may work, and permissible hours for employment of a minor.
The legislation also would institute directives regarding minors in the entertainment industry, including permitting requirements, restrictions on dangerous performances, and the establishment of an irrevocable trust account or a qualified tuition program if the minor is entitled to receive residuals anticipated to exceed $2,500 for a production.
“Summer and after-school jobs are great opportunities for young people to learn, gain experience, and grow, but we have to ensure that minors are working in a safe environment,” said Mackenzie. “In crafting House Bill 1548, we did a comprehensive study of our existing policies and worked together to design a law that will best protect Pennsylvania’s children.”