Feds Launch Effort to Help Teen Workers Stay Safe and Healthy

May 19, 2004
Millions of American teens are preparing to enter the workforce this summer doing a variety of jobs that will teach them valuable skills. While most will earn extra money and gain valuable work experience, many risk being seriously or even fatally injured on the job.

(For further information about teen workers, see "Protecting Vulnerable Workers.")

Eighty percent of U.S. teenagers work during their high school years. In 2001, 45,000 teens were injured at work, and 175 died as a result of an on the job injury.

To address this challenge, numerous federal agencies, collectively known as the Federal Network for Young Worker Safety and Health (FedNet), have joined together to educate teens, their parents, counselors and employers on how young people can stay safe on the job.

FedNet's latest web-based product, Teen Summer Jobs: Safety Pays, is available at www.osha.gov/teens. It provides teen worker safety and health materials in English and Spanish. Topics covered include safe driving, lawn care, life guarding, farm work, construction, parks and recreation and restaurants.

"This new resource will help teen-agers get the information necessary to keep them safe on the job," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. "By providing practical information on a wide range of work activities, we can help ensure that young people have safe and healthy work experiences."

There are five basic things teens can do to help reduce the risk of injuries and illnesses:

  • Talk to their employers;
  • Know their workplace rights;
  • Stay alert and work safe;
  • Get safety and health training; and
  • Find and follow practical safety tips like those found on FedNet's web site.

The nine FedNet agencies committed to coordinating their efforts to help reduce work-related injuries and illnesses among teen-age workers include the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Education, Health & Human Services, Interior, Labor, Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

About the Author

Sandy Smith

Sandy Smith is the former content director of EHS Today, and is currently the EHSQ content & community lead at Intelex Technologies Inc. She has written about occupational safety and health and environmental issues since 1990.

Sponsored Recommendations

Free Webinar: ISO 45001 – A Commitment to Occupational Health, Safety & Personal Wellness

May 30, 2024
Secure a safer and more productive workplace using proven Management Systems ISO 45001 and ISO 45003.

ISO 45003 – Psychological Health and Safety at Work

May 30, 2024
ISO 45003 offers a comprehensive framework to expand your existing occupational health and safety program, helping you mitigate psychosocial risks and promote overall employee...

DH Pace, national door and dock provider, reduces TRIR and claims with EHS solution

May 29, 2024
Find out how DH Pace moved from paper/email/excel to an EHS platform, changing their culture. They reduced TRIR from 4.8 to 1.46 and improved their ability to bid on and win contracts...

Case Study: Improve TRIR from 4+ to 1 with EHS Solution and Safety Training

May 29, 2024
Safety training and EHS solutions improve TRIR for Complete Mechanical Services, leading to increased business. Moving incidents, training, and other EHS procedures into the digital...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of EHS Today, create an account today!