Child Labor Violations and Sweatshops in the U.S.

T-HRD-90-18: Published: Mar 16, 1990. Publicly Released: Mar 16, 1990.

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GAO discussed child labor violations and sweatshop working conditions in the United States. GAO found that: (1) since 1983, there has been a significant increase in the number of illegally employed minors; (2) the increase in violations has occurred against all major types of child labor standards, including hours, minimum age, and hazardous working conditions; (3) most violations occurred in the retail trade and service industry; (4) there were 31,500 work-related injuries or illnesses to minors in fiscal year (FY) 1988; (5) one-third of the child fatality cases reviewed probably involved safety or health standard violations; (6) sweatshops predominated in the restaurant, apparel, and meat processing industries; and (7) in FY 1989, employers paid about $1.5 million in federal child labor penalties.

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