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Benchmarking report: hiring and safety practices for adolescent workers in agriculture.

Lee B; Hughes S; Gempler M
Marshfield, WI: Marshfield Clinic, 2004 Dec; :1-12
Data from the National Agriculture Statistics Service report that in 1998 there were 431,730 youth between ages 12 and 17 hired in agricultural work. The majority (86%) were boys. The largest cluster of youth (28%) were boys ages 16-17 years employed in crop work, including cash grains, nursery, vegetables, fruits and nuts. The next largest group was boys ages 16-17 employed in livestock operations of beef, dairy, cattle, or swine. During 1998 there were 1,900 reported work-related injuries among hired adolescents, which comprised about 8% of all injuries to youth on farms. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) provided funding for a collaborative project - Safety Training for Employers and Supervisors of Adolescent Farmworkers (STESAF). The goal of this project is to improve the occupational health and safety knowledge and practices of agricultural employers/supervisors responsible for adolescent farmworkers (ages 14-17 years old). The project builds on the success of other industries, such as quick service restaurants that depend on a labor pool of young people. The first step of this project was to increase our understanding of agricultural employers' perspectives on the characteristics of adolescents as farm workers. Additionally, we sought information on employers' current practices and future intentions to employ adolescents. In January 2004, focus group discussions were convened with participants at the annual meeting of the National Council of Agricultural Employers. In April 2004 mail surveys were sent to members of the National Council of Agricultural Employers and the Washington Growers League. To protect the anonymity of survey respondents, no personal identifiers were collected and only limited information regarding agricultural operations was requested. An overview of survey findings is provided here. This information can be useful for comparing your practices with other employers and managers. Results will also be used to guide future programs that support efforts of agricultural employers to safely and appropriately give adolescents positive work experiences.
Accident-analysis; Accident-potential; Accidents; Accident-statistics; Agricultural-industry; Agricultural-workers; Agriculture; Children; Epidemiology; Farmers; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-hazards; Work-analysis; Worker-motivation; Work-operations; Work-performance; Workplace-studies; Work-practices
National Farm Medicine Center, Marshfield Clinic, 1000 N Oak Ave, Marshfield, WI 54449-5790
Publication Date
Document Type
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Source Name
Benchmarking Report: Hiring and Safety Practices for Adolescent Workers in Agriculture
Performing Organization
Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division