Companies may require excessive school-age minors to work longer hours and go longer with out breaks underneath laws headed to the Home ground.

The invoice (HB 49) sponsored by Rep. Linda Chaney, a St. Pete Seaside Republican, handed via the Home Commerce Committee by a party-line vote, with Democrats opposed. It was the final hurdle earlier than going to a vote earlier than the total chamber.

It applies to 16- and 17-year-olds and would enable employers to require them to work at 6 a.m. — half-hour sooner than present legislation — in addition to greater than eight hours on a college night time and for greater than six days in every week and for greater than 4 hours at a stretch with no break.

Chaney mentioned highschool teenagers want jobs to assist households deal with a souring financial system, regardless of an unemployment fee of three% in Florida and three.7% nationwide.

“We are actually within the worst financial system in many years,” Chaney mentioned. “Our schooling is versatile now. We have to have our workforce versatile.”

Democrats and a few academics, although, spoke out in opposition to the measure, saying it pressures teenagers to work longer hours on the sacrifice of faculty efficiency.

Emily Grace, a Hillsborough County instructor, described certainly one of her college students as being unable to remain awake at school and having falling grades due to the lengthy hours he works.

“If that is taking place with our present legal guidelines, I don’t wish to think about the damaging affect that that is going to have on him and different college students if this invoice is handed,” Grace mentioned.

Democrats additionally famous there’s a waiver course of in place for college kids to have the ability to work longer hours.

“There’s already a course of in legislation, and if that’s damaged, let’s repair it,” mentioned Rep. Dan Daley, a Coral Springs Democrat.

Chaney, although, famous the waiver is just for college students who present financial hardship and it’s exhausting to get and barely used.

The momentum for the invoice within the Home, nevertheless, hasn’t been matched within the Senate, the place the companion invoice (SB 1596) hasn’t obtained a listening to. As a substitute, the Senate has superior a narrower invoice (SB 460) to permit 16- and 17-year-olds to work on residential building websites with roofs and scaffolding underneath six toes. A lot of the invoice is geared towards increasing apprenticeship alternatives.

Nonetheless, the chambers have till March 8, the final day of the Common Session, to achieve an settlement on the invoice.

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