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Labor Dept. nixes new farm child-labor regs
Congressman Tim Huelskamp (R-Kansas) says the law that was set to prevent children from doing farm chores would have greatly affected agrarian-based states across the country.
"For months now -- in town halls, in constituent meetings, in the ag committee field hearing in Dodge City -- I've heard from Kansans about the hardships this regulation would place on our farms and ranches," says the congressman. "Kansas farmers have spoken -- and we've finally gotten our message through to the Obama administration."
Kansas is just one of many states that has fought against the proposal.
Huelskamp says the decision is proof that persistence pays off. "While I'm thrilled at the announcement, this is just one of a whole host of job-killing regulations threatening family farms," he says. "For the sake of rural America, I hope we will see many more announcements like this in the coming months."
Adds the congressman:"There is no better place to develop an appreciation for hard work and a strong work ethic than the family farm."
The Kansas lawmaker adds that along with the decision to withdraw the rule, the Labor Department will continue to allow farm safety classes through local chapters of 4-H and Farm Bureau. The proposed changes would have replaced the government's approval of those classes with its own 90-hour training course.
The Associated Press reports that child labor groups say they are stunned and disappointed the Obama administration is backing off the plan to keep children from working in hazardous jobs on farms. They contend more children will die in farm accidents that could have been prevented.