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General Laws

Section 56. No minor shall be employed or permitted to work in, or in connection with, any factory or workshop, or any manufacturing, mercantile or mechanical establishment, telegraph office or telephone exchange, or any express or transportation company, or any private club, or any office, letter shop or financial institution, or any laundry, hotel, manicuring or hairdressing establishment, or any motion picture or other theatre or any other place of amusement, or any garage, or any hospital in a nonprofessional capacity, or in any beauty culture, weight reducing or other similar establishment, or be employed as an elevator operator, or as a switchboard operator in a private exchange, or in domestic service in the home of the employer, more than nine hours in any one day, and, except as to transportation or telephone companies, and except as to hotels, private clubs and places of amusement where the employment is determined by the attorney general to be by seasons, and except as to hotels where meals are served only during three separate periods totalling not more than seven hours in any one day and the employment is connected with the serving of said meals, if the work so performed by such a minor in one day is not continuous, but is divided into two or more periods, the work of such minor shall be so arranged that all such periods of work shall fall within a period of not exceeding ten consecutive hours, except that in the case of mercantile establishments such periods of work may fall within a period of not exceeding eleven and one-half consecutive hours during a total of not more than seven days in any calendar year of which six shall be six weekdays within a period of four weeks immediately preceding Christmas and the seventh the Saturday immediately preceding Easter, except that in any place of employment where the principal source of income of certain employees is in tips or gratuities, upon the written petition of not less than sixty per cent of such employees, the attorney general may allow such periods of work to fall within a period not exceeding twelve consecutive hours; and in no case shall the hours of labor exceed forty-eight in a week, except that in manufacturing establishments or hotels where the employment is determined by the department to be by seasons, the number of such hours in any week may exceed forty-eight, but, except in the work of fish processing when necessary in the judgment of the attorney general, and then only during the months of June, July, August, September and October, shall not exceed fifty-two, provided that the total number of such hours in any year shall not exceed an average of forty-eight hours a week for the whole year, excluding Sundays and holidays; and if any minor shall be employed or permitted to work in more than one such place, the total number of hours of such employment shall not exceed forty-eight hours in any one week. The hours of labor of nonprofessional employees in a nursing or convalescent home, or rest home, or charitable home for the aged shall not exceed forty-eight hours in any one week. The attorney general may grant authority for office workers to exceed nine hours of labor in any one day; provided, that the hours of labor of such workers shall not exceed forty-eight in a week. Every employer, except those hereinafter designated, and except employers of persons in domestic service in the employer’s home, shall post and keep posted in such manner as the attorney general may require in a conspicuous place in every room where such persons are employed a printed notice stating the number of hours’ work required of them on each day of the week, the hours of beginning and stopping work, and the hours when the time allowed for meals begins and ends, or, in case of mercantile establishments and of establishments exempted from section one hundred, the time, if any, allowed for meals. The employment of any such person at any time, other than as stated in said printed notice, shall be deemed a violation of this section unless such employment was to make up time lost on a previous day of the same week by reason of stopping, for not less than thirty consecutive minutes, of machinery upon which such person was employed or dependent for employment and unless a written report of the date, hour and duration of the stopping of such machinery is sent to the attorney general within forty-eight hours of its occurrence; nor shall such overtime employment be authorized because of the stopping of machinery for the celebration of any holiday. Every employer engaged in furnishing public service, or in any other kind of business in respect to which the attorney general shall find that public necessity or convenience requires the employment of minors by shifts during the different periods or parts of the day, shall post and keep posted in such manner as the attorney general may require in a conspicuous place in every room where such persons are employed a printed notice stating separately the hours of employment for each shift or tour of duty and the amount of time allowed for meals. A list by name of the employees, stating in which shift each is employed, shall be kept on file at each place of employment for inspection by employees and by officers charged with enforcement of this law. In cases of extraordinary emergency or extraordinary public requirement, this section shall not apply to employers engaged in public service or in other kinds of business in which shifts may be required as hereinbefore stated, but no such emergency or public requirement shall justify a variance from the preceding requirements of this section until a written report of the day and hour of its occurrence and its duration is sent to the department. This section shall not apply to persons who are declared by the attorney general to be employed in a professional, executive, administrative or supervisory capacity or as personal secretaries. The attorney general may grant authority for employees of hospitals to be employed for more than nine hours in one day and forty-eight hours in one week and outside of a period of ten consecutive hours, or for employees of nursing or convalescent homes, rest homes and charitable homes for the aged to be employed for more than forty-eight hours in one week, if he finds that an emergency exists.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, no minor under fourteen shall be employed in service on a farm for a total of more than four hours in any one day nor more than a total of twenty-four hours in any one week, except that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the employment of a minor under fourteen who is related by blood or marriage to the owner or operator of the farm on which such minor is employed.

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