House Seeks to Block Labor Regulations

The U.S. House of Representatives is currently debating a bill that would block the implementation of recently proposed Department of Labor regulations seeking would reform agricultural child labor laws.

The regulations were part of an attempt by the Labor Department to update long untouched child labor laws. Since the 1970s, laws governing children’s activity on farms and ranches have not been reform or evaluated. Some Labor Department officials believe that these regulations need to be updated in order to better reflect current agricultural practices.

The regulations would ban children under 16 from working many potentially dangerous farm jobs, including handling powered machinery and working with certain animals without adult supervision.

Earlier this week, the chair of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry, Representative Tom Rooney, co-sponsored legislation that would prevent the Obama Administration from implementing the new labor regulations. In a statement, Rooney claimed that the labor Department’s regulations represent inappropriate federal involvement. “The unreasonable, over-reaching mandates proposed by the Department of Labor would severely restrict the ability of young people to work on family farms,” Rooney said, “and it would threaten generations of farm tradition and culture.

In addition, Rooney stressed the importance of agriculture to American families, stating, “The family farm is a cornerstone of our nation’s economy and food supply, and it is a way of life for farmers across Florida and the country. Our bill would uphold the family farm so that young people can continue to learn important work ethics and skills while helping their families prosper.”

To learn more about agricultural financing opportunities contact a Farm Plus Financial representative by calling 866-929-5585 or by visiting

Follow us on: Twitter

Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer