. "7 Conclusions and Recommendations." Protecting Youth at Work: Health, Safety, and Development of Working Children and Adolescents in the United States. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 1998.
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Protecting Youth at Work: Health, Safety, and Development of Working Children and Adolescents in the United States
licly recognize those workplaces that meet the criteria. In addition, all workplaces where young people receive publicly supported education and training (e.g., internships, cooperative education, youth apprenticeship, and placements subsidized by the Job Training Partnership Act and other federal funds) could be required to meet the criteria, with participation by other employers on a voluntary basis.
Identifying commendable workplaces would have several beneficial effects. Publicly identifying employers who maintain developmentally appropriate healthy working conditions would convey critical information to youth, parents, and educators. It would encourage all employers to improve conditions for young workers, not only as a matter of image and public relations, but also because the most desirable young workers would seek to work in the workplaces identified as commendable. The criteria for being designated as a commendable workplace for young workers might include the following:
adhering to all child labor laws and regulations;
maintaining a safe and healthy workplace;
providing information to young workers about industry-specific and workplace-specific safety risks, employees' rights (e.g., when and how to lodge complaints), protective practices, and pertinent child labor laws and regulations;
providing adequate training (regarding such things as handling equipment and following workplace procedures, including emergency procedures) for young workers at the inception of employment and whenever major new tasks are assumed;
allowing for visitation and inspection by school personnel, parents, or other interested parties;
providing special training for supervisors of youth employees;
recognizing that education is young workers' highest priority and, therefore, paying attention to their school performances; and
providing opportunities for young workers to learn and use new knowledge and skills, including technical, social, and personal skills.
Financial support for the establishment of such criteria might come from a combination of government agencies, foundations, nonprofit community groups, and business organizations. Implementa-