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Labor Department to revise proposal that would have tightened child farm-labor rules

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By Al Cross, Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issies

The U.S. Department of Labor will revise and apparently relax the controversial regulation that would have allowed children under 16 to do farm work only on farms wholly owned by their parents.

An unnamed department official told reporters on a conference call this afternoon that the new rule will take into account changes in corporate structure over the past few decades and the devices that farm families use to transfer ownership between generations, sometimes gradually. That was a major point of contention for farmers who objected to the proposal.


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