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Archive for the ‘assault and battery of a child’ tag

The Wrongs to Children Act

October 31st, 2018 at 10:10 am

abuseChild labor laws have come a long way since the beginning of the 20th century, when millions of children throughout the U.S. worked in factories, in plants, and on the street. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, one out of eight children was employed in 1870. By 1900, one out of five children was employed. Nowadays, it is rare that a child under 15 years of age is employed, aside from farm work or normal chores.

Why Do We Need Child Labor Laws?

In the past, U.S. children were taken advantage of as “employees.” They were abused physically and emotionally, they were not given fair wages, their working conditions were atrocious, and most importantly of all, they were not allowed to be children. A child with a 10 or 12 hour work day, which was not uncommon in the early 1900s, would, of course, have no time or energy to devote to education, play, rest, or happiness. Child labor is still a large problem in third world countries, with one in four children between the ages of five and 17 working in sub-Saharan Africa, according to UNICEF.

Child Labor Laws in Illinois

The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 was the first groundbreaking piece of legislation that took aim at child labor. In the years since, other federal and state laws have been enacted. The Illinois Wrongs to Children Act, statute 720 ILCS 150, was created in 1961 to continue strengthening child labor laws. The Act makes it illegal to take, receive, hire, employ, use, exhibit, or have in custody any child under 14 years old for the purpose of:

  • Begging;
  • Dancing;
  • Peddling;
  • Doing acrobatics, gymnastics; or contortionism;
  • Walking on a rope or wire;
  • Performing an obscene, immoral, or indecent act;
  • Playing on a musical instrument;
  • Singing; or
  • Tightrope walking.

A violation of the Act is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $2,500. A second or subsequent violation is a Class 4 felony, punishable by one to three years in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000.

What Is Allowed Under the Act

The purpose of the Wrongs to Children Act was to get children off the street as street performers and to stop people from employing or using them in unsanctioned, unlicensed events where children are more likely to be injured, harmed, abused, or taken advantage of. As such, it is perfectly legal for a child to sing or play an instrument in their school’s band or for a paying orchestra. Performing acrobatics as a gymnast in competition is, likewise, legal. Singing and dancing are allowed for TV, plays, movies, commercials, and other events as well. If you have questions about the legality of an act, you should contact an attorney.

A Rolling Meadows Child Crimes Attorney Can Help

Whether you have been charged with assault or battery of a child, child abuse or child neglect, or charged under the Wrongs to Children Act, you need to call a criminal defense lawyer today. Contact skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200.

 

Sources:

https://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2017/article/history-of-child-labor-in-the-united-states-part-1.htm

https://data.unicef.org/topic/child-protection/child-labour/

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