A bill filed by State Rep. David Perryman would give technology center students a chance to be paid to work hands on in a career field of their choosing if passed.
House Bill 1331 would allow minors that are at least 16-years-old to work in mandated safe environments in manufacturing and energy companies.
“This has been really effective in South Carolina,” Perryman said. “States that have good tech. centers like ours that work well with industry have seen good results from allowing kids who are learning skills and trades in manufacturing to work with them.”
Perryman said current laws prohibit anyone under 18-years-old from working in manufacturing areas.
“This allows kids to be mentored through a company and instead of being a volunteer they can actually be employed.” he said. “They can learn a lot from just shadowing employees, but when they’re actually providing service the knowledge increases.”
Language in the bill prevents minor students from being put in harms way, according to Perryman.
“We don’t want kids out there rough necking, but if someone is on a job site, and there is a safe technological application, and that child is there they can be paid to assist,” he said.
Perryman said he was approached informally by tech centers to craft 1331.
He said even if it doesn’t become a law this session it’s something that can be massaged out for years to come.
HB 1331 will receive its first ready Feb. 6.