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Sutton Council visits local businesses during Child Employment Fortnight 30.03.12

Sutton Council has been visiting employers in the borough to remind them of their duties if they employ children.

During National Child Employment Fortnight, businesses have been reminded of strict rules aimed at keeping young people safe and healthy.

Anyone over the age of 13 can get a part time job but there are strict laws to prevent them being exploited or allowing work to interfere with their school work. For example, children under 16 must not work during school hours, can only work between 7am and 7pm, can only work for two hours on a Sunday and can work a maximum of 12 hours a week in term time.

Children can work more during the school holidays but must take a one hour break if they work four continuous hours.

To ensure employers are aware of these conditions and that the jobs children are doing are suitable, they must apply to the council for a work permit, which is signed by the young person's parent or guardian. Without this registration form, employers are unlikely to be covered by their insurance policy.

Sutton Council issues around 150 work permits a year.

Cllr Dave Callaghan, Executive Member for Children, Families and Youth Services at Sutton Council, said: "A part time job can be valuable in helping young people to gain vital work experience, and of course some extra spending money. But it's important that their school work doesn't suffer as a result and they're only doing jobs that are suitable to their age and ability.

"That's why our staff will be out and about during Child Employment Fortnight, to remind employers of their obligations, check all young workers have the relevant permits, and explain why these rules are in place."

Copies of the work permit application form and child employment leaflets have been sent to all high schools in the borough and are also available in libraries.

For more information contact Carol Clarke at  or 020 8770 6612.

Last updated: Wednesday, 11 April 2012

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