Young people often lack the life experiences and workplace exposure of older employees resulting in a lack of knowledge and common sense regarding safety issues. Employers who hire young people should take the following safety precautions:
1. Comply with all child labor laws and occupational safety/health regulations that
apply to your business.
2. Assess and eliminate hazards for young workers.
3. Train young people to recognize hazards and how to use safe work practices. Routinely verify they are using safe practices.
4. Evaluate equipment used by young people to be sure it is legal and safe to use.
5. Make sure young people are appropriately supervised. This will help prevent injuries and exposure to hazardous situations.
6. Ask supervisors and experienced workers to help develop an injury and illness prevention program and to identify/resolve safety and health problems.
Employer Risk Management
A risk management program generally includes addressing the following elements:
1. Identify the perils and hazards of the activities/tasks.
2. Estimate the frequency and severity of potential loss.
3. Implement strategies to eliminate or control the potential for loss.
4. Ensure adequate resources are in place to redress loss that does occur.
Types of Work Most Often Hazardous to Young People*
- Work in or around motor vehicles
- Operation of tractors and other heavy equipment
- Work near electrical hazards e.g. overhead power lines while using poles, ladders, pipes or cranes
- Work performed in retail and service businesses where there is a risk of robbery- related injury
- Work on ladders, scaffolds, roofs or construction sites
- Work around cooking appliances
- Continuous manual lifting and lifting of heavy objects
*The majority of these are considered by the FLSA to be hazardous occupations and are not permitted.
Sample Young Worker Safety and Health Checklist for use by Employer and Employee
Employers have a responsibility to provide safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. To achieve this, it is important for each employer to ensure that each employee, upon arriving in the workplace, is fully briefed on the safety and health practices, hazards applicable to the workplace, and means of protection against exposure to those hazards. You are not required to complete or submit this voluntary checklist, but we believe you will find it helpful in achieving workplace safety.
For detailed FLSA information, visit the Youth Rules website.
This is a FedNet product, produced in cooperation with the Department of Education, Standards Administration, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Individual Training Plan
The Individual Training Plan is a written document identifying the knowledge and workplace skills a student will learn during the work-experience placement. General and specific measurable goals and objectives for the individual student should be determined and reflected in the training plan. This needs to be a fluid training plan that is visited often with new goals and objectives added. Core employability skills should be a vital part of all these plans. The level of competency reached in a variety of areas should be assessed and documented by the employer/worksite supervisor on a student evaluation form. Additionally the training plan should identify the person or persons responsible for teaching the knowledge and skills to be acquired. This may occur at the worksite or during the classroom instruction. Safety training needs to be documented as well. For example:
Student Performance Evaluation
Students at a worksite need to have regular performance evaluations. This progress report should show evidence of a student’s level of competency in the tasks identified in the Individual Training Plan. The evaluation would include documentation of skill and standards attainment. For example: