Do I have special rights as a young worker?
The number of hours you can work and the types of jobs you can do, depends on your age.
Young workers are people aged 14 to 18, who work for an employer. As young workers are generally in full-time education, they are protected by different employment laws than adults. This is to make sure their work does not put their health or education at risk.
The working hours for young people are regulated by the Protection of Young Persons (Employment) Act 1996. The Act does not apply to children or young people who are employed by a close relative.
How many hours can I work?
Employers cannot employ children under 16 in regular full-time jobs. They can employ children aged 14 and 15 years on light work as follows:
Children aged 14 or over can do light work during the school holidays where the hours do not exceed 7 in any day or 35 in any week.
Children over 15 but under 16 can do light work up to 8 hours a week during school term time.
Children under 16 must have at least 21 days off work during the summer holidays.
Children aged 16 to 18 can work a maximum of 8 hours a day and 40 hours a week.
What breaks am I entitled to?
Workers under 16 are entitled to 30 minutes rest break after every 4 hours of work and 14 consecutive hours off between shifts.
Workers over 16 are entitled to a 30 minutes rest break for every 4.5 hours of work and 12 consecutive hours of between shifts.
Both must have 2 days off a week.
Read more about working hours for young people on citizensinformation.ie, https://bit.ly/3OVMRWi
Know Your Rights has been compiled by South Connacht Citizens Information Service CLG, which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0818 07 6330 Address: Boyle CIC, Elphin Street, Boyle, Co. Roscommon
Information is also available online at citizensinformation.ie and from the Citizens Information Phone Service, 0818 07 4000.