Your Guide to Hiring Minors in Healthcare, Senior Living & Social Services

Healthcare, Property & Casualty, Risk, Senior Living & Social Services, War For Talent

Labor shortage is an employer issue that spans across industries, but has especially impacted the healthcare, senior living, and social services industry. Many have avoided hiring minors in the past due to strict regulations that placed limitations on the tasks they are legally able to perform. These same employers are now turning to a minor workforce to fill the staffing gaps they are experiencing.

Hiring minors presents an excellent opportunity for young individuals to grow and acquire valuable skills. However, it’s important to remember that regulations and provisions exist for the safety and well-being of young workers. It’s the employers’ responsibility to ensure compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local laws.

M3’s Guide to Hiring Minors provides a high-level guide of federal and state regulations that specifically pertain to minors.

Hiring Minors for Healthcare, Senior Living & Social Service Facilities

Below is a breakdown of minor employment/equipment tasks and restricted tasks impacting Wisconsin-based facilities.

Personal Care for Wisconsin State Law/Guidance:

Minors 16 years old and over MAY provide personal care to residents except in a CBRF (Community‐Based Residential Facility), unless the CBRF has a waiver of variance to hire resident care workers under age 18. This includes assisting the resident in dressing, bathing, eating, ambulation (walking from place to place), etc.

  • Minors 14 years and over MAY push residents in wheelchairs, but cannot load or unload chairs.

Resident Handling Devices (Hoists and Hoisting Apparatus) for Federal Law:

16-17 year olds MAY assist an adult worker in the operation of floor‐based vertical powered resident lift devices, ceiling‐mounted vertical powered lift devices, and sit‐to‐stand devices provided the following conditions are met:

  • Minor employee has completed the 75 clock hours of nurse’s aide training
  • Minor employee is not operating by him or herself AND is assisting in the use of the devices as a junior member of at least a two‐person team headed by an employee who is at least 18 years of age
    • All staff members must be trained in the safe operations of the devices being used
  • Minor MAY set up, move, position, and secure unoccupied lifting devices. They MAY assist trained adult employees in operating the controls that activate the power of the device
    • They MAY act as a spotter/observer and MAY position items under the resident who is being transferred or lifted
  • Minor MAY NOT independently engage in “hands on” contact with the resident during a transfer/lift process
  • Minor is not injured while operating or assisting in the operation of the lifting device
  • The employer has provided minor employee who will assist in the operation a copy of Attachment A from the Wage and Hour Division Field Assistance Bulletin No. 2011‐3

To have a further discussion about laws surrounding minor employees in your state or about the areas of this legislation that specifically affect your industry, contact your M3 account executive or risk manager.

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