Child Labor

Child Labor

Child labor was a commonplace, if contentious, practice for much of the first half of the 20th century. During the progressive era, various state level laws were passed to regulate and limit the practice. New York’s celebrated Factory Investigating Commission, created in the wake of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire, addressed child labor as much as it did fire codes. The Keating-Owen Act of 1916 attempted to ban the interstate sale of any good manufactured by American children, but the Supreme Court overturned the law. It took the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, one of the last New Deal laws, to finally put an end to most child labor in the United States. The law covers most people under the age of 18.

Cry Wolf Quotes

As reprehensible as child labor is, and as much as it ought to be abandoned — that's something that has to be done by state legislators, not by Members of Congress. This may sound harsh, but it was designed to be that way. It was designed to be a little bit harsh. Not because we like harshness for the sake of harshness, but because we like a clean division of power, so that everybody understands whose job it is to regulate what.

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U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT)
01/14/2011 | Full Details | Law(s): Child labor

The hour restrictions are so tight. There are many jobs where you can work after 9 p.m.

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Jane Cunningham, state senator from Missouri (R )
02/15/2011 | Full Details | Law(s): Child labor

My aim is to put back some common sense. We're not doing students any favor by telling them, 'You cannot work.'

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Jane Cunningham, state senator from Missouri (R )
02/15/2011 | Full Details | Law(s): Child labor

The child will become a very dominant factor in the household and might refuse perhaps to do chores before six a.m. or after seven p.m. or to perform any labor.

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Senator Weldon Heyburn (R-ID). Only date available: 1908.
01/01/1908 | Full Details | Law(s): Child labor