U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) appeared on Fox News Channel's "Happening Now" in response to the Department of Labor’s (DOL) announcement that it has withdrawn a proposed rule dealing with youth working in agriculture. The Obama Administration listened to the concerns of American farmers and ranchers and will not re-propose the rule. If the Department has moved forward with regulating the relationship between parents and children on their own farm, a dangerous precedent would have been set – virtually nothing would be off limits when it comes to government intrusion into our lives.
Last year, DOL Secretary Hilda Solis proposed rules that would restrict family farm operations by prohibiting youth under the age of 16 from participating in common livestock practices such as vaccinating and hoof trimming, and handling most animals more than six months old, which would severely limit participation in 4-H and FFA activities and restrict their youth farm safety classes; operating farm machinery over 20 PTO horsepower; completing tasks at elevations over six feet high; and working at stockyards and grain and feed facilities. The language of the proposed rule is so specific it would even ban youth from operating a battery powered screwdriver or a pressurized garden hose.
In December of last year, Sen. Moran and 29 of his Senate colleagues sent a letter to Secretary Solis requesting that the proposed rule be withdrawn.
In March of this year, Sen. Moran introduced legislation, the Preserving America’s Family Farm Act, to prevent the Department of Labor (DOL) from enacting its controversial proposed restrictions on youth working on family farms.