Social Media, Teen Labor Bills Teed Up

Social Media, Teen Labor Bills Teed Up

High-profile bills aimed at keeping children off social media and loosening decades-old work restrictions for 16- and 17-year-old youths were among 15 bills that the Legislature formally sent Thursday to Gov. Ron DeSantis.

The social-media bill (HB 3) was a priority of House Speaker Paul Renner, a Palm Coast Republican who contends online platforms harm children’s mental health and can lead to sexual predators communicating with minors. The bill, in part, would prevent children under age 16 from opening social-media accounts — though it would allow parents to give consent for 14- and 15-year-olds to have accounts. Children under 14 could not open accounts.

DeSantis has indicated he will sign the bill, though critics have pointed to courts blocking similar laws passed in other states. Tech-industry and free-speech groups have signaled a likely First Amendment court challenge.

The bill (HB 49) about teen labor laws would maintain a 30-hour work week limit for 16- and 17-year-olds when school is in session. But parents, guardians or school superintendents could waive the 30-hour limit. Also, the measure would lift a restriction by allowing 16- and 17-year-olds to work more than eight hours on Sundays and holidays when school is scheduled the next day. It also would require that 16- and 17-year-olds working eight or more hours in a day get 30-minute meal breaks after four hours of work.

DeSantis has until April 5 to act on the proposals.

One Response to "Social Media, Teen Labor Bills Teed Up"

  1. I hate this coddling wherein teenagers are capped at thirty hours after school and get meal breaks. What are we, a bunch of communists codifying meal breaks into law? They should have scrapped the entire

    As far as social media goes for kids, it’s about time that the government started being parents for us; that’s what ‘parental rights’ is all about! MAGA

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