New Employment Laws

As of January 1, 2007, the minimum wage in Massachusetts is set at $7.50 per hour. This will increase to $8.00 per hour as of January 1, 2008 ( M.G.L. c. 151, s. 1-2). Additionally, there have been updates to child labor laws.

The new law, effective January 1, 2007, states that 16-17-year-old minors may work until 10:15 p.m. in establishments that stop serving customers at 10:00 p.m., and until 11:30 p.m. on non-school nights (until 12:00 a.m. in restaurants and race tracks on non-school-nights). Additionally, all minors must have direct and immediate supervision of an adult supervisor after 8:00 p.m., with exceptions ( M.G.L. c. 149, s. 60-105).

Public Awareness Campaign

In early July 2007, the Attorney General's Office launched a public awareness campaign educating teenagers about their rights in the workplace, including these new employment-related laws. The campaign included radio and print transit ads, as well as a specialized website, which ran through the months of July and August. These materials are available for you to use to educate youth and others about the minimum wage, work hours for teens, and other important youth employment issues.

LaborLowDown.com

On July 9, 2007, the office launched a "splash" page, www.LaborLowDown.com . The splash page, or "micro site," was created to directly target teenagers and present them with a specific set of facts within the area of youth employment rights, including minimum wage, hazardous jobs, supervision, and hour restrictions. Each page within the site provides an overview of the laws in these specific areas, and links for more information on the Attorney General's Office website.

Radio Advertisements

On July 9, 2007, a 30-second radio advertisement began airing on radio stations throughout the Commonwealth. The ad was produced by Jam'n 94.5 (WJMN-FM Boston), and features teen voices alerting teen workers to workplace rights, such as minimum wage, hazardous jobs, supervision, and hour restrictions, and referring them to www.LaborLowDown.com .

Transit Advertisements

Beginning Monday, July 23, 2007, all buses in the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) featured "car cards" (posters on the bus interior) highlighting one of four workplace rights, including minimum wage, hazardous jobs, supervision, and hour restrictions, and referring teenagers to www.LaborLowDown.com . Download PDFs of each car card here: