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Under Chapter 312, Public Laws of 1931, the Department of Labor took over all of the rights, powers and duties of the North Carolina Child Welfare Commission. For the complete laws relative to Child Labor, see Chapter 90, Consolidated Statutes of North Carolina, as amended. Under the law, it becomes the duty of the Department of Labor, "to make and formulate . . . . . rules and regulations for enforcing and carrying out the provisions of this article." (Article 1, Child Labor Regulations, C. S., Chapter 90.)
1. No child under 16 years of age shall be employed or permitted to work in, or about, or in connection with any mill, factory, cannery, workshop, manufacturing or mercantile establishment, laundry, bakery, office, hotel, restaurant, barber shop, boot-black stand, public stable, garage, place of amusement, brick yard, lumber yard, or any messenger or delivery service, (Sec. 5032, C. S.), until an employment certificate has been issued on forms prescribed by the Department of Labor as follows:
(Note: Old Form C-7, School Record, etc., has been discontinued. Enter grade completed by child on back of Form No. 2.)
All of the above forms are self-explanatory and must be completed in detail. A new Form No. 1 is required for every change of employment. If in doubt about age of child, the Bureau of Vital Statistics, State Board of Health, Raleigh, N. C., will verify age upon request, without charge, if you do not ask for affidavit under seal.
2. No child under 16 years of age may be employed or permitted to work in the places of employment set out in Regulation 1 above for more than eight (8) hours in any one day and forty-eight (48) hours in any one week, except that a boy over 14 and under 16 years of age, who is the sole support of himself and/or widowed mother, may work up to 11 hours per day and 60 hours per week. In such case the Authorized Agent of the Department must make investigation and certify that an eight-hour job can not be secured for such boy. Forms 1, 2 and 3 must be filed and a special employment certificate must be secured from the Commissioner of Labor. No child under 16 years of age (except newspaper carrier boys--See Regulation 11 below) may be employed or permitted to work before 6:00 o'clock in the morning or after 7:00 o'clock in the evening.
3. No girl under 14 years of age shall be employed or permitted to work in any mill, factory, cannery, workshop, manufacturing or mercantile establishment, laundry, bakery, place of amusement, or other place of business set out in Regulation 1 above (Section 5032, C. S.) or in messenger or delivery service, or at any form of street trades.
4. Boys between the ages of 12 and 14 years may be employed in occupations not prohibited in Sections 5032 and 5033, Consolidated Statutes, during the hours the public school is not in session and on Saturdays. In all such cases, employment certificates must be obtained from the Authorized Agent of the Department of Labor, who will determine that such employment is not in violation of Sections 5032, 5033 and 5034, C. S. (Also, see "Street Trades" below.)
5. The County Superintendents of Public Welfare, and in counties having no such officers, the County Superintendents of Schools, are specially designated by law as certificating officers for their counties and authorized agents of the Department of Labor. (Sec. 5035, Consolidated Statutes.) To each of these the Commissioner of Labor issues a non-transferable certificate of appointment, authorizing the holder to serve as the representative of the Department of Labor in enforcing the provisions of the Child Labor Laws of the State. Use of such certificate by an unauthorized person, or by an authorized person to secure admittance to manufacturing or mercantile establishments for an unauthorized person, is a misdemeanor.
6. The authorized agent of the Department of Labor is hereby empowered to suspend any certificate for the lawful employment of a child under 16 years of age when it appears that such child is working under conditions that may injure his health, or morals, or endanger his physical safety, pending appeal to the Commissioner of Labor. The agent may revoke any certificate issued on false evidence as to age.
7. The authorized agent of the Department shall exercise due care to preserve the official records coming into his possession and they shall be so kept as to prevent alteration and to prevent them from being used by any unauthorized person.
8. Sec. 5032, C. S., forbids the employment of any child under the age of 14 years in "a place of amusement." This does not apply to children engaged in fraternal, religious, charitable or educational performances, where they are under the control, directly or indirectly, of their parents and/or teachers. It does apply in the case of children who are engaged or employed in places of amusement for commercial purposes, and in such case employment certificate must be secured as provided for other occupations, except that where the work is of a temporary nature, or in case of a travelling organization which will not be in the State long, employment certificate may be issued without medical examination.
9. Definition: Street Trades are defined as selling merchandise, such as newspapers, magazines, peanuts, etc., or working as itinerant boot-blacks, etc., on the streets. Girls under 16 years of age will not be permitted to engage in any form of street trades. Boys 12 and 13 years of age may engage in various forms of street trades during the time school
is not in session, or during the hours before and after school, provided that the hours of work, or the hours of work and school, shall not exceed eight in any one day, or 48 hours in any one week. Such boys may not be employed before 6:00 A.M. nor after 7:00 P.M. Boys 14 and 15 years of age may engage in various forms of street trades between the hours of 6:00 A.M. and 7:00 P.M., not to exceed eight hours per day and 48 hours per week.
10. No child within the ages set out in Regulation 9 above may be legally employed in street trades until a "Street Sales Badge" has been secured from the certificating officer, or authorized agent of the Department, which shall be issued in accordance with the rules of the Department. The child shall be required to wear such badge when at work. (Note: Before a Street Sales Badge may be issued, all of the forms described in Regulation 1 above must be completed and filed. Instead of regular certificate, the special form "Permit for News Carriers and Street Sales" will be issued. Serial number of badge must be entered on card.) The requirement as to badges shall not apply in towns of less than 5,000 population as shown by the U. S. Census of 1930.
11. Newspaper and magazine carrier boys, operating on fixed routes, are not classified as being employed in street trades. Boys under 16 and over 14 may be employed as carrier boys, under regular employment certificates, between 5:00 A.M. and 8:00 P.M., but the hours of work and the hours in school shall not exceed eight hours in any one day. These hours are fixed by Sec. 5033, C. S., as amended by Ch. 125, Public Laws of 1931, which further limits the hours of work for carrier boys to four hours per day and 24 hours per week.
12. Nothing in the above rulings shall be construed to prohibit a boy under 14 years of age from selling and delivering magazines and periodicals in the vicinity of his home and under the supervision of his parents, provided that the requirements of sections 5033 and 5034, C. S., as to hours of labor and the health and safety of the child are strictly observed. If such selling develops into a commercial enterprise, or if the child is permitted to do general selling on the streets, the authorized agent of the Department will take immediate steps to stop it.
The certificate of appointment referred to in Regulation 5 above, will serve as a means of identifying the agent. The same form of certificate is used for deputy commissioners, inspectors and other employees and agents of the Department of Labor. It bears the great seal of the State of North Carolina and is signed by the Commissioner of Labor. The name and title of the holder are given and he is required to paste in a clear photograph of himself and sign the certificate for identification purposes. The issuance of these official certificates will be carefully guarded. Every effort has been made to make them clear, plainly official and easily recognizable. The holder of one of these certificates should be admitted to every manufacturing or mercantile establishment without question.
The Department of Labor is directed by statute to "conduct such research and carry out such studies as will contribute to the health, safety and general well-being of the working classes of the State." Upon these investigations and studies are to be based "rules and regulations governing work places and working conditions" (Chapter 312, Public Laws of 1931) which have the force of law.
That there is ample authority under the law to promulgate such rules and require industry to observe them, is certain, but it is the opinion of the Commissioner of Labor that improvement of working conditions may best be secured by a campaign of education that will reach every employer and every employee. As the first step in this direction, Senator Capus M. Waynick, of Guilford county, who takes great interest in all matters relating to labor, was asked to sponsor a bill more clearly defining inspectional and other duties of the Commissioner of Labor and providing for posting in every place of employment in the State, a notice containing an abstract of the labor laws. This bill became law and will be found in Chapter 244, Public Laws of 1933.
With the labor laws posted "in a conspicuous place in every room where five or more persons are employed," as the law requires, the next step of the Department of Labor will be to make regular and systematic inspections, with these two ends in view:
First, to see if the labor laws and the Department's rules and regulations, made and published thereunder, are being violated.
Second, to determine what other rules and regulations should be adopted to further "contribute to the health, safety and general well-being of the working classes of the State."
The Department of Labor now has under way the drafting of "Rules Relating to Sanitation of Factories and Mercantile Establishments in North Carolina." This code will not be completed until every proposed rule has been studied, both by industry and by labor, and tested out by the experts of the Department of Labor. It is the intention of the Commissioner of Labor to include in this code only those rules and regulations that time and experience have proved best and which meet the approval of a majority of the recognized leaders of labor and industry. Rules that have passed such a test can be enforced with a minimum of friction, because they will appeal to the conscience and good judgment of all parties concerned.
Approaching the problem from this angle, and by the methods outlined, it can be seen that the compilation of such a code can not be completed in a few weeks or months.
For the purpose of providing the necessary data and securing the proper back-ground of experience for the drafting of such a code and for the further purpose of interesting both employer and employee in improving working conditions, the Commissioner of Labor instituted on June 1,
1933, a system of grading industrial plants. It is hoped that this system will arouse no little interest and result in improving conditions everywhere.
In order that manufacturers may know the requirements of the Department of Labor, and the matters that are taken into consideration in grading, the Department's rules for the guidance of its inspectors are given below. The numbers refer to items on the Department's Form D. S. I.-15, "Report of Inspection," which the inspector is required to complete and leave with the manager or superintendent, as follows:
The rules for the guidance of the Department's inspectors, which follow, are numbered to correspond with the numbered items above, and may be considered as tentative rules for the regulation of manufacturing and other establishments. In more complete and detailed form they will form part of the industrial code above referred to.
1. The labor law shall be posted in every room where five or more people are employed. If the poster has been torn down in some manner that you feel is unavoidable the plant should not be penalized, provided application has been made to the Commissioner of Labor for a new poster.
2. All posted laws must be complied with. In the section dealing with the "First aid kit", if, for a good and sufficient reason, you find that the requirements have not been entirely met on your first inspection, the plant should not be penalized, provided immediate steps are taken to secure the necessary supplies.
3. The common drinking cup shall not be used. Fountains shall be provided at convenient places. Stress should be laid on the importance of using the angle jet fountain or other fountain so designed that the stream of water will not fall back on the point of discharge. The nozzle should be protected by a guard in order to prevent the mouth of the drinker from coming into contact with the nozzle.
If the local water supply is not pure, or if for any other reason it is impracticable to have fountains, a closed container (bottle recommended) should be used and individual drinking cups provided free of charge. Individual cups should be protected from dirt, supply should be adequate,
and means of disposal of both the used cups and waste water should be provided.
All drinking facilities should be kept clean and sanitary and in good repair.
4. (1) Floors should be scrubbed as often as necessary in order to keep them clean. No person shall expectorate upon the walls, floor or stairs of any building. Cuspidors shall be provided wherever necessary and shall be cleaned, for a plant in continuous operation, at least once a day. When wet processes are used, the floors shall be drained free from liquids, if possible.
(2) If walls are dirty they should be painted or whitewashed. This is not only important from the standpoint of sanitation, but it is also important from the standpoint of better lighting and of better production.
(3) Windows shall be kept clean. Dirty windows make a plant darker, thus lowering the quality of the product manufactured and also cause many avoidable accidents.
5. (1) In every manufacturing establishment proper lighting, either natural or artificial, shall be provided in all entrances, halls and stairs leading to work rooms; and in all places where persons have to work or pass in an emergency, and in all elevators. In all places where persons are working the lighting shall be such as will not cause strain on the vision or glare in the eyes of the workers.
(2) All manufacturing establishments shall keep all work-rooms, toilets and washrooms heated sufficiently for comfort and well-being of the employees. The minimum temperature should not be below 58° F.
(3) All workrooms and toilet rooms should be ventilated either by windows or a mechanical system of ventilation. If ventilation is secured by windows, means should be provided to prevent a draft directly on the persons working, in cold weather.
(4) Air conditioning is almost a necessity in some industries, while in others it is less essential. Attention should be paid, and credit given, to any means that is used to keep the air free from dust and dirt, thus making it more wholesome and comfortable for the employee. Sometimes this may be done by a ventilating system that washes and cleans the air; or by treating raw products in some way that will prevent the contamination of the air by dust and dirt. Greater stress should be placed on the matter of air conditioning in tobacco factories and similar industries where it is most essential.
(5) According to the report of the Industrial Commission there were 25,886 accidents in the state last year. Only 4,871, or less than 20%, were classified as working machine accidents, while the other 80% was from other causes. This seems to indicate that, on the whole, machines are reasonably well guarded. The major causes of accidents are, handling objects, use of hand tools, falls of persons and operation of vehicles. A great many of these accidents are due to the ignorance and carelessness of the workers and can only be overcome by the management educating the employees in safety methods and appliances and the strict enforcement of safety rules and regulations.
On your tour of inspection you should particularly look for objects lying around over which a person is liable to fall, holes in the floor that
need patching, slippery floors caused by spilling oil or water and not cleaning it up, dark hallways and stairways, unguarded stairways, protruding nails or spikes, elevator shafts left open, the conditions under which heavy objects are handled and the movement of hand trucks and other moving objects. In machine shops and other places where there are flying objects you should observe if the operative, and particularly his eyes, are protected against flying particles.
It is important that you should observe safety appliances on machines and if you see a dangerous machine not properly guarded you should, by all means, call the attention of some one in authority to the danger and assist in working out a solution. However, you can make yourself very unpopular by insisting on the installation of certain safety devices that the management, from years of experience, has found to be impractical, although, theoretically, it may seem to be the ideal thing. Use common sense.
6. (1) In every establishment where the law makes it mandatory that a medical chest be provided, it shall be the duty of every employer to have at least one person in his employ who has been sufficiently trained or instructed so that he is competent to apply the simple treatments or remedies that are needed in "first-aid care". In large plants one such person should be available for every major division of the establishment.
(2) Emphasis should be placed on the necessity of educating the personnel of a plant in the proper use of safety devices provided and to create in them a desire to eliminate accidents, thus protecting themselves and their fellow employees. Some of the methods of safety education that have been sucessfully used by many plants are, accident posters, lectures, motion pictures, employee safety committees, safety competition, etc. Any, or all, of these methods should be commended, encouraged and fostered. Due credit for these and any other programs that educate and encourage the employees in safety practices should be given.
7. (1) Cooperation of the management will largely determine the success of the work of an inspector. If the management is endeavoring to improve the general working conditions of their employees an inspector will be welcomed in the plant and his suggestions listened to, discussed, and acted upon if they are practical. Sometimes the management may conscientiously wish to make some major improvements but may not be able to do so for financial reasons. In such cases, they should be encouraged to work out their program over a period of time so that the cost can be distributed and will not work an undue hardship.
(2) Cooperation of the employees can be detected by the manner in which they keep the floors and walls of their workrooms and toilets, (provided the floors show evidence of being properly scrubbed and swept) and by their observance of safety rules and use of safety devices.
8. All welfare activities, such as a social service worker, musical organizations, baseball teams or other sports, gardening, the care of homes and yards, etc., are of immense value and much credit should be given a plant for fostering all such activities.
9. (1) Before making a recommendation you should be sure that it is both reasonable and practical, that the management is familiar with the
necessity of it and that there is no misunderstanding. If, no your next visit, your recommendations have not been complied with this item will have to be checked as unsatisfactory.
(2) REQUIREMENTS are stronger than recommendations and should be most frequently used in the first three items. Sometimes other conditions such as exceedingly dirty walls or floors, unusually poor lighting or ventilation, etc., may be so unsatisfactory that you will require rather than recommend. If your requirements are not complied with on your next visit, you will not only check it as unsatisfactory, but will make a special report to the Commissioner so that he can take the matter up with the officials of the company.
(Extract from "Rules Relating to Sanitation of Factories and Mercantile Establishments.")
(a) The contents of the first-aid case shall be as follows:
(b) All bottles or other containers containing drugs or other substances shall be clearly labeled and the specific purpose for which the contents are to be used shall be marked thereon.
(c) If the establishment occupies more than one floor, a stretcher shall be provided.
(d) In all establishments where work is carried on in more than one building, or on several floors, duplicate kits should be provided so as to avoid delay in attending to injuries.
(e) In every establishment where a first-aid kit is to be maintained, at least one person shall be instructed by a physician or trained nurse how to apply first aid to injured persons and shall have charge of the first-aid kit and its maintenance. Such kit shall be for first-aid use only.