In communities across our nation, no tradition runs deeper from generation to generation than that of working on a family farm. By working alongside their parents, grandparents and neighbors, young people learn important life skills and values – the values of hard work, personal responsibility and perseverance. They learn how to problem solve and work on a team to get things done. Agriculture is a way of life; but now the federal government wants to fundamentally change that way of life.
In September 2011, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) proposed a new child labor rule that would ban youth under the age of 16 from participating in many common farm-related tasks. The government is now trying to tell farmers and ranchers: “We know what’s best for your children, and what they should and should not be doing.”