state, local, and tribal governments and the private, academic, and nonprofit sectors;

  • proposals to enhance public outreach and communication to assist families in evaluating risks to children and in making informed consumer choices; and

  • identification of high-priority initiatives that the federal government has undertaken or will undertake in advancing the protection of children's environmental health and safety.

The task force, which is led jointly by the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, is also to report biennially on "research, data, or other information that would enhance our ability to understand, analyze, and respond to environmental health risks and safety risks to children" and, if needed, to suggest new legislation to protect children. Following the issuance of the Executive Order, EPA and the Department of Health and Human Services announced plans to jointly establish research centers on environmental threats to children's health, and EPA also established an Office of Children's Health Protection to direct this regulatory and research effort. However, this important initiative may not necessarily address the health and safety risks associated with child labor unless children are defined to include adolescents. In addition, attention has not yet focused on the environmental health risks children and adolescents face as workers.

WORKERS' COMPENSATION

Workers' compensation provides no-fault insurance for occupational injuries and illnesses. Each state has its own workers' compensation law, with varying coverage requirements and benefit levels. Private employers are required to have workers' compensation insurance in 47 states, although waivers are available in 24 of those states; coverage is elective in New Jersey, Texas, and for all but "extrahazardous" occupations in Wyoming (U.S. Department of Labor, no date: Table 1).6 Workers employed in interstate com-

6  

Workers' compensation information is available electronically at http://www.dol.gov/dol/esa/public/regs/statutes/owcp/stwclaw [1997, September 19].



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