Green Party Stands Against Weakening Child Labor Laws and Fights for Safer Workplaces
Remembering Workers Lost and Demanding Stronger Workplace Safety Measures
On April 28th, International Workers Memorial Day, the Green Party of the United States honors the workers who have lost their lives on the job and the families they left behind. It is a day to reflect on the ongoing struggle for safer workplaces and the need to hold employers accountable for the safety and wellbeing of their workers.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 5,250 fatal work injuries in the United States in 2021, an increase of 2% from the previous year. These numbers are unacceptable and highlight the urgent need for stronger workplace safety measures. We cannot continue to ignore the high human cost of our current economic system, which prioritizes profits over people.
In a recent USA Today article, lawmakers in 11 states are seeking to weaken child labor laws, which could lead to an increase in workplace injuries and fatalities. The Green Party strongly opposes any efforts to roll back child labor protections, which are essential to protecting the health and well-being of our youngest workers.
We cannot allow greed and corporate interests to put the lives and safety of our children at risk. On this International Workers Memorial Day, we stand in solidarity with workers across the country and call on lawmakers to prioritize the health and safety of our workers by strengthening, not weakening, labor protections.
Some state legislators, most of them Republicans, see teenagers as a partial solution. They also argue that relaxing the rules will prompt more teens to seek out valuable work experiences and make it easier for them to supplement their families’ incomes. However, this argument is misguided and unethical. The Green Party strongly opposes any attempt to weaken child labor laws.
As the Party's platform on Youth Rights states, "young people have the right to meaningful work, and to be free from exploitative and hazardous working conditions." Any effort to use teenagers as a solution to labor shortages undermines their rights and puts them in harm's way.
On this International Workers Memorial Day, we honor the memory of those we have lost by renewing our commitment to creating a safer, more just, and equitable world for all workers. Join us in calling on lawmakers to protect our workers and strengthen labor protections.
Green Party Platform - II. Social Justice - Youth Rights