AAI Submits Comments on Farm Youth Labor Rule

Responding to proposed child labor regulations, the Agribusiness Association of Iowa (AAI) joined over 70 agricultural organizations this week and filed comments in response to a proposal by the federal Department of Labor (DOL) that would limit youth employment opportunities on farms.

The coalition comments focused on what AAI and other agriculture organizations see as over-reaching regulatory efforts by DOL. Most prominent is the proposal’s potential impact on family farms. The coalition comments urged the department “to maintain the integrity of the family farm exemption approved by Congress.”
The department has the authority to prohibit youth employment in jobs that are “particularly hazardous” but the department’s proposal would prohibit youth from working in any job with “power-driven equipment.” Read literally, the department’s proposal would prohibit a youth under 16 from working in any job that had even simple power tools like a battery-operated screw driver. The coalition argued that DOL should withdraw the rule and make sure that it is following the intent of Congress in only addressing occupations that are particularly hazardous.

Download and read the coalition’s DOL Child Labor Comments