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Youth Workers

Under-Resourced Neighborhoods Can Be Incubators For Future Entrepreneurs

In 2016, I walked into a school’s career day on the west side of Chicago and met a great young man. This honor roll student played basketball and was respected by his peers. But despite these wonderful qualities, he sold drugs to pay for the things he desired. He was one of thousands of young Black men in Chicago who have the ambition, intelligence and leadership acumen to become successful, legitimate entrepreneurs but have no idea how to find that path, let alone follow it. There are tens of thousands more like him in cities across the country. Some put their entrepreneurial drive and leadership skills to destructive, and illegal, use.

Youth Subminimum Wages And Why They Should Be Eliminated

In 2023, the issue of child labor re-emerged as a national crisis. Federal data on the rise of child labor violations and numerous investigative reports of widespread illegal youth employment garnered sustained media attention, sparking outrage from the public and lawmakers alike. At the same time, EPI has documented an ongoing, coordinated effort to roll back existing child labor protections that is gaining momentum in states across the country. Legislative proposals to weaken child labor protections—some of which have already been enacted—allow employers to hire teens for more dangerous jobs or extend the hours young people can work on school nights.
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