Are Jobs Overworking Teenagers?


Kennedy Hardy, Staff Writer

Starting at the age of 16 and maybe even younger, teenagers begin to get jobs. Which can vary from just a babysitting job, a retail job, a summer job, a job during school or just a teenager working a seasonal job. But, there is a rising question of are these bosses taking advantage of naive teenagaers. Who just wants a normal job experience?

Many teenagers are working a part time job in high school making minimum wage, and I feel like in this area and at H-F, a lot of people my age have gotten jobs over quarantine. Some of them look at these jobs as just something else to fill up their schedules, while others are being roped into thinking that becoming the next manager of their fast food job is what they’re gonna do for the rest of their lives by their over aged managers.

While there is nothing wrong with wanting to get a promotion as a teenager, managers shouldn’t be putting the pressure of that big of a task on teenagers who are still going to school everyday. 

Some teens tend to develop the thought that they need to work everyday, or that it’s normal to work 30 plus hours a week while still going to school every day. It’s not healthy for them at all. It’s also a horrible habit to develop at that.

Working hard is one thing, but pushing yourself to work more hours than you need to as a teen is another. In my opinion, the time to work hard and work a lot of hours would be summer, because you don’t have to juggle school and work at the same time.

There is no reason a teenager should be up at one in the morning, doing homework because they had to close up their job that night. Matter of fact, I think that that problem in itself. Teenagers shouldn’t be closing, especially if there are older managers to do so.

Once you get in a rhythm and get used to doing something, it just sticks. Teenagers are training their brains that it is normal to work these hours and juggle school at the same time. Adults will praise them for working but can’t even take a second to realize how this is really affecting their child.

A lot of parents will actually force their kids to get a job in order to pay for certain things. 

“Oh, you have a job? Now you can fill my tank, buy your own food and pay for your own phone bill.” It’s sick and not okay at all. No parent should give their own child adult tasks as a teenager.

There are also some teens and corporations that actually care about their workers, teens especially. 

Some companies allow teens to pick their hours and are really flexible with scheduling. Some encourage teens to work less hours and even wont let them work more than 20 hours a week.

The rules for part time teenagers age 16 and up are not even set in most states meaning that jobs can choose to extort their teen workers because they are young and impressionable.

Some teenagers don’t even question how many hours they are working because they think that it is normal for teens to work 30 plus hours a week because that is all they are accustomed to, but it’s not. 

I believe that laws for part time teenagers under the age of 18 should be stricter and more established. There should be laws to protect teens from being overworked by their managers.

Teenagers should also take some time to inform themselves on topics. When a teen goes to get a job, their parents should have a conversation with them about how many hours they should be working and educate them on what overworking is.

 At the end of the day the argument of who’s fault it is still remains. Is it the managers fault for taking advantage of their workers? The parents’ fault for holding their kids to such a high standard? Or, could it be the kids fault for not educating  and defending themselves?