(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
“Youth are being exposed to the job market for the first time – be fair, fulfill the requirements of the law and maintain the rights of young employees in particular and in general all your employees,” Economy Minister Arye Deri said.
Sunday marked the first day of summer vacation for high school students, a time when many teenagers choose to take on a job to save up pocket money for the year.
After a law to increase enforcement of labor laws was introduced in July 2012, 988 administrative notifications were issued and 34 financial sanctions were issued for a total of NIS 1,776,910 with respect to youth labor law violations.
In addition, 51 criminal warnings, 231 fines and 12 criminal indictments were issued with respect to youth labor law violations.
Deri addressed the youth planning on working this summer in a statement to employers on Sunday morning. “Stay safe at work and learn your rights. The Economy Ministry call center is at your disposal.
If you encounter a violation of the law, contact us. We will deal with the utmost severity with abusive employers.”
The industries in which most of the youth labor laws were violated were event halls, restaurants and food services.
Most of the offenses revolved around salaries below minimum wage, working over the daily eight-hour limit and 40-hour work week, employing youth with no registry (a condition that is no longer in place), employing a youth with no medical approval, employing youth on the weekly day off and employing youth with no breaks.
Today, in order to employ youth, the employer must obtain a copy of the employee’s identification card or the employee’s parent’s identification card and also a recent medical approval that the youth is able to work at the place of employment.
To allow for youth to stay up to date on their rights, the Economy Ministry has put out an app, available in Hebrew and in Arabic, called Youth Summer Work.
The app also includes a virtual time card and wage calculator, contact details for the Enforcement Division to register complaints regarding harmful employment and a feature that allows youth to input their savings goal and have the app calculate the number of work hours left until attaining their goal.
Youth under 14 are not allowed to work at all. Youth aged 14–15 can work during official school holidays, and only at jobs that will not harm their health and development.
Youth cannot work more than eight hours a day and no more than 40 hours a week. Youth aged 16 and up can work up to nine hours a day, but no more than 40 hours a week.
Overtime is strictly forbidden for youth. Working on the day of rest is strictly forbidden for youth. The day of rest for Jewish youth is Saturday, and youth from other religions can choose Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
Youth should take note that there is no such thing as a “trial period” or “learning period” – all work hours must be paid by the employer, including preparation days, work meetings and training.
Minimum wage for 14-15-year-olds is NIS 16.13 an hour, for 16-year-olds it is NIS 18.82, for 17-year-olds it is NIS 20.16, and for 18-year-olds it is NIS 22.31.
Yaffa Sulimani, director of the Regulation and Enforcement Administration at the Economy Ministry, said on Sunday: “The youth population is one of the disadvantaged populations that the administration makes a point of putting an emphasis on.
This, due to the need to protect youth, whose employment is considered a supreme value and of great significance in later integration into the labor market.”
The full youth labor laws are listed on the Youth Summer Work app and on the ministry’s website.