The Manitoba government has launched a new online course in hopes of preparing youth to enter the job market.
The Young Workers Readiness certificate course aims to help youth understand pay statements, workplace safety and employees’ rights.
“Having a job can be a fulfilling experience for youth, as it can provide a sense of accomplishment and responsibility,” said provincial Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen in a news release.
The course replaces the previous requirement of having employers apply for a government permit to hire an employee between the ages of 13 and 15. Manitoba was the only province to require the permit, which the province says was was difficult to enforce.
Employers in Manitoba wanting to hire a worker under the age of 16 will now be required to confirm that their young employees have completed the training.
The province says the certificate is transferable between different employers so that the young employee is only required to take the course once.
The minister is also reminding employers, parents and youth that a person must be at least 13 years old to work in Manitoba, however there are certain restrictions placed on young workers, including the stipulation that employees under the age of 16 cannot work between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. and are not permitted to work more than 20 hours per week during a school week.
Employees under 16 years of age are also required to have direct adult supervision while on the job and cannot work on a construction site, on drilling or servicing rigs or in industrial or manufacturing processes. Thirteen-year-old employees are also not permitted to work with dangerous tools such as knives, slicers or deep fryers in the food preparation industry.
Any work that requires employees to be on scaffolding or swing stages is not permitted for employees under 16 years old, as is any work that takes place at a height of more than 1.5 metres, and workers under 16 are not permitted to prune, repair, maintain or remove trees and shrubs, nor can they handle herbicides or pesticides.
The course is now available to any young employees.