Young Workers Health and Safety Network

The Young Worker Health and Safety Network (YWHSN) is an informal network of public health professionals coordinated by volunteers as a subcommittee of the Occupational Health and Safety section of the American Public Health Association (APHA.) The group includes individuals from academia, public health, labor law enforcement, health and safety consultation and/or enforcement, labor organizations, and educators.

The overall guiding principals of the Network include:

  • All youth deserve opportunities for positive and meaningful work experiences.
  • All youth have the right to a safe and healthy work environment.
  • All youth need an understanding of workplace rights and responsibilities and the skills to play a proactive role in creating safe workplaces and protecting themselves
    on the job as they progress through all stages of their working lives.
  • All employers must understand and comply with Occupational Safety and Health laws and those who hire workers under the age of 18 must understand and comply
    with the child labor laws.
  • Health and safety training must be considered an integral component of occupational skill development, and be included in all job training programs, including secondary
    and post-secondary education.
  • All employers who hire youth need to provide effective training, supervision, and other supportive programs to ensure the safety of their young workers, particularly
    when they are new to the workforce or a specific job.
  • The community as a whole (parents, teachers, youth, employers, and government representatives) needs to understand and support efforts to provide safe, positive jobs for youth.

For more information about the work of the Young Worker Health and Safety Network, please see the following:

  • Safe Jobs for Youth: A National Agenda for Young Workers ages 14-24

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