Congress Debates Child Farm Labor Rules

WASHINGTON DC - The US Department of Labor is facing a backlash from farmers and ranchers.

Colorado Republican Scott Tipton says Washington bureaucrats don’t “get” agricultural America. As chair of a House subcommittee on Small Business, he had one of several testy exchanges with the Labor Department’s Nancy Leppink. Tipton said at age 12 he was bucking 80-pound bales of hay for a neighbor…

Scott Tipton … to be able to learn a work ethic – my father felt that was important for me.
Nancy Leppink: Well, first of all, I don’t think the rule we’re proposing would have precluded you from bucking hay-
Nancy Tipton: I was earning a wage.
Scott Leppink: I know – but this regulation only focuses on the most hazardous occupations.

According to U-S labor statistics, three-quarters of the children killed in work-related accidents in 2010 were working on farms.

The Labor Department says it will put out revised rules for another round of public review.

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