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Child Employment

Coventry Education Welfare Service is responsible for issuing work permits and monitoring all children, aged 14-16 years, who seek part-time employment (outside education/learning hours).

What the law says about children working

Children must be 14 years old to work.

There are also these restrictions:

  • Children can only do light work that will not harm your health, welfare or your  work and your  attendance
  • Children must have at least two weeks break from education and work each year.
  • Note: The employer must carry out a risk assessment and then inform a child's parents that their health, welfare and safety will not be affected by the work.

Children cannot be employed to do the following things:

  • Work in a cinema, theatre, discotheque, dance hall, (except in connection with a performance given entirely by children)
  • Sell or deliver alcohol, except in sealed containers
  • Deliver fuel oils
  • Work in a commercial kitchen
  • Collect or sort refuse
  • Do any work which is more than three metres above the ground
  • Work where harmful physical, biological or chemical agents or substances are used
  • Collect money or canvass from door to door
  • Work where you may be exposed to adult material or situations which are considered unsuitable for children
  • Carry out telephone sales
  • Work in a slaughterhouse or butcher's shop, or other premises connected with the killing of livestock, butchery or in the preparation of carcasses or meat for sale
  • Work in a fairground or amusement arcade
  • Work in the personal care of residents in a residential home
  • You cannot work in a factory or warehouse, or in a pub or club, or in a fish and chip shop
  • How long children are allowed to work depends upon their age.

Children aged between 14 to 15 can work for:

  • Two hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, per education day (during term-time). May not work during education hours, and may only work one hour before the education day starts
  • Five hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, on a Saturday
  • Two hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, on a Sunday
  • Five hours per day, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, during  holidays but no more than 25 hours per week

Children aged over 15, but younger than  leaving age, can work for:

  • Two hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, per  day (during term-time). May not work during education hours, and may only work one hour before education
  • Eight hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, on a Saturday
  • Two hours, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, on a Sunday
  • Eight hours per day, between 7.00am and 7.00pm, during  holidays. But no more than 35 hours per week
  • These rules have been made by Government for the safety and protection of children, who must not do any job that will cause them injury or harm.

Please also note:

There is currently, no minimum wage for children. Ask your parents what is a reasonable wage for the work you wish to do.

Even if you work with your parents in a family business, they must still apply for a work permit.

The law says "A child assisting in any trade or occupation carried out for profit or gain is deemed to be employed even if he/she receives no award for his/her labour."

You may be asked to show your permit by the police or council officials. Always ask to see their identity card before talking to anyone you do not know.

Where to go

Name
Coventry Education Welfare Service
Address
82 Moseley Avenue
Coundon
Coventry
Postcode
CV6 1AB

Who to contact

Telephone
024 7678 8360
E-mail
BSCCoundon@coventry.gov.uk
Website
Coventry City Council website
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