Jun 2, 2014

Child Labour: Ontario’s Minimum Age Requirements

I recently viewed a video on Youtube entitled, “Underage Girl Working at Harvey’s”.  To view it, click here.

This article summarizes the minimum age laws in Ontario.

The Ontario government imposes minimum age requirements for employment through the Education Act, and the Occupational Health & Safety Act.

To work in an industrial establishment such as an office, a store or a restaurant serving area a worker must be 14 years old.

To work in a factory (which is defined to include a restaurant kitchen) a worker must be 15 years old.

To work in construction or in logging a person must be 16 years old.

A person must be 18 years old to work in an underground mine or in window cleaning.

Special Laws Apply to Students

14, 15, 16 and 17-year olds may not be employed during a school day unless they are excused from school attendance under the Education Act.

As of June 1, 2014, the minimum wage for a student is generally $10.30. This rate applies to students under the age of 18 who work 28 hours a week or less when school is in session, or work during a school break or summer holidays.

The student minimum wage does NOT however apply to students employed at a summer camp who are in full-time attendance at a primary or secondary school or a post-secondary educational institution (except when on holiday). These employees are also not entitled to overtime pay or public holiday pay.

For more information on Ontario’s minimum standards law, click here.

For the past 25 years, Doug MacLeod of the MacLeod Law Firm has been providing employers with employment law advice. If you have an employment law question, he can be reached at 416 317-9894 or by email at [email protected]


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