AIHA States Opposition to Future Logging Careers Act
The proposed legislation would allow 16- and 17-year-old children to be exempt from child labor laws if they worked in logging or mechanized operations under parental supervision.
The American Industrial Hygiene Association announced it is opposing H.R. 1215, the "Future Logging Careers Act," which would allow 16- and 17-year-old employees working in logging and mechanized operations to be exempt from child labor laws if they are employed by a parent or person standing in place of a parent who owns the business.
U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, introduced the bill March 3, and it has been referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
AIHA expressed concern that injuries and fatalities resulting from this proposed legislation may outweigh any positive economic gains. A letter of opposition sent to the House of Representatives Committee makes the following points:
- Logging and tree trimming have some of the highest injury and fatality rates nationwide.
- Other sectors, such as agriculture, have this measure in place, and because of it, 113 youths under 20 die annually from farm-related injuries.
- AIHA is concerned that this legislation would have a detrimental impact on the health and safety of young workers in Idaho, where children between the ages of 16 and 17 are currently permitted to work any job that is not declared as hazardous by the Secretary of Labor.