Young Worker Safety in Restaurants

Did you know there are a lot of rules and regulations put in place by OSHA to make sure that none of those youngin’s you have get hurt?

Well, there are. There are actually a lot of labor laws that are in effect for young workers, or people under the age of 18, to ensure safe working conditions.

Here are a few things to remember:

  • Child Labor laws state that workers under the age 18 are not to work with, repair, adjust, or clean power-driven machinery (like meat slicers and bakery mixers).
  • Make sure that any young person you have employed knows to do these things.
  • (and hey, while your at this, this applies to us old dogs, too)
    • Make sure minor employees are properly trained on any equipment they are using.
    • Make sure minor employees don’t show up to work in dangerous clothing – they should wear any personal protective equipment provided.
    • Make sure minor employees are not playing Russian Roulette. Okay, really that means make sure they use and guarding and bumpers that the equipment comes with (just like when you take me bowling).
    • Make sure minor employees always ask for help if they are not sure how to do something.
  • Also, as a restaurant owner, you should make sure that your employees follow the manufacturer’s instructions for machine use and cleaning.

And, if I’m being totally honest, these rules apply across several different industries. I’ve worked in both food prep and retail, and these are rules I applied to both situations. So whatever kind of business you have, remember to check laws and statutes when it comes to your minor employees.