Child Labor State Laws

FILE — Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds holds a news conference on COVID-19 in Johnston, Iowa, Tuesday, May 19, 2020. As the federal government scrambles to crack down on surging child labor violations, some state lawmakers want to let children work longer hours and in more hazardous occupations. In addition to allowing 16- and 17-year-olds to work unsupervised in child care centers last year, the Iowa Legislature sent a bill to Republican Gov. Reynolds earlier this month to expand the hours minors can work and allow 16- and 17-year-olds to serve alcohol in restaurants.

MADISON, Wis. — Lawmakers in several states are embracing legislation to let children work in more hazardous occupations, for more hours on school nights and in expanded roles, including serving alcohol in bars and restaurants as young as 14.

The efforts to significantly roll back labor rules are largely led by Republican lawmakers to address worker shortages and, in some cases, run afoul of federal regulations.

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