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COMPARATIVE FIGURES FOR THREE YEARS Number employed for full time:

1914 Mines..

3,033 Quarries..

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4,855

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A set of new rules for mines and a set for quarries are much needed. Some of the larger operators are much ahead of the State in this matter and have good rules of their own for the guidance of their officers and employees. These rules are handed to every workman in his native tongue.

Respectfully submitted,

W. W. JONES,

Mine Inspector.

(6) SPECIAL REPORT ON CANNERIES AND DAY OF REST

LAW

PREPARED BY BUREAU OF STATISTICS AND INFORMATION

(A) THE LABOR LAW IN CANNERIES IN 1914 The subjects of hours of work of women and employment of children in canneries have for a number of years been before the public and demanded attention by the Legislature in this State. This has been due to the desire of the employers in the industry to secure some modification of, or exemption from, the provisions of the Labor Law on those subjects which apply generally to all factories in the State.

In the course of the long standing controversy over this matter the State has twice made a special investigation of conditions in the industry. One of these investigations was made by the De partment of Labor in 1908, and the results were set forth in the annual report of the Bureau of Factory Inspection for that year. The other State investigation was made by the Factory Investigating Commission in 1912, and the results of this are to be found in the second report (1913) of that Commission.

Up to 1912 no modification of the general law as to work of women and children was secured by the canners, but in that year the canners for the first time secured from the Legislature a modification of the general law in their favor in the form of an amendment exempting canneries from all restriction on hours of work of women during the canning season from June 15 to October 15. As a result of the recommendations of the Factory Investigating Commission, however, this sweeping exemption was modified in 1913, leaving the law as it now stands, which, in brief, allows the canners no special exemption on any other subject than the hours of work of women, such being the only exemption ever allowed

by law.

It is no part of our purpose here to further review past investigations or legislation, or to offer one more general discussion of the arguments and evidence for or against the allowance of special exemptions to canners. It is proposed rather to review the administrative experience under the present law during the season of 1914. In other words, it is the purpose here to answer the question - How did the present law work in 1914 ? That, it may be observed, is now really the main question. For it should be borne in mind that the present law was the result of a very thorough investigation, and that it does as a matter of fact allow the canning industry a very considerable exemption from the general law, as explained below. In other words the presumption is logically in favor of the present law except only as actual experience may demonstrate to the contrary.

Fortunately the Department is in a position to present a fuller account of experience in the administration of the law in canneries for 1914 than for any previous year, because extraordinary efforts were put forth both to secure a thorough enforcement of the law and to afford full information as to results. These efforts included the assignment of a considerable force of inspectors exclusively to cannery inspections with the result that frequent, amounting to nearly daily, visits to a large number of canneries for longer or shorter periods during the canning season were secured. In addition transcripts from time books were procured for the period in which the largest exemption from the general requirements of the law is permitted to canners, as further evidence of the actual results of such exemption.

The reports of inspectors following frequent visits, together with records of prosecution, and the time-book records of canners constitute, therefore, the sources of information for this present review. The former source throws light especially on the question of enforcement of the law, the latter more particularly on the adequacy of the exemption allowed, and these are the two general subjects to which attention is here directed.

ENFORCEMENT OF LAW IN CANNERIES There is little occasion to note experience relative to other matters in the Labor Law than hours of women and employment of children. It has never been proposed, and certainly there is no ground for considering any such idea, that the requirements of the Labor Law as to sanitation, accident prevention, fire protection, etc., should be modified in favor of the canneries. These matters were covered, of course, in the inspections of canneries in 1914 just as in any other factory, and as a matter of fact, orders relating to sanitation and safety were issued to canneries in 1914 as follows:

SANITATION AND SAFETY ORDERS ISSUED TO CANNERIES IN 1914

Number of

compliances

Number of reported up to SUBJECT OF ORDERS

orders end of year SANITATION Toilet facilities: Water closets.

125

86 Wash rooms.

19

15 Dressing rooms.

56

37 Cleanliness and repair of workrooms, etc.

16

12 Ventilation, heat and humidity: Removal of dust, fumes, etc.

1

1 Drinking water...

2

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The figures for compliances represent only such as had been reported by the close of the fiscal year (ended September 30, 1914) in which the orders were issued. It will be seen that upwards of 70 per cent of sanitation and safety orders were reported complied with by that time. No prosecutions for failure to comply with such orders were brought against canners during the year.

While the matters of sanitation and safety in canneries thus required and received attention, they present no situation peculiar to canneries as distinguished from any other factories, and attention may be turned to the two topics, child labor and hours of women, which have been the subject of special controversy in this industry.

Employment of Children in “Sheds" The particular phase of child labor in canneries which has been a matter of controversy peculiar to their industry as distinguished from any other factory industry, is the employment of children in cannery “sheds."

Practically every cannery has one or more" sheds,” a structure distinct from the factory proper, in which the raw materials (beans and corn chiefly) are prepared for the canning process. Until 1905, it was understood that section 70 of the Labor Law, which forbade absolutely children under 14 years of age, and also children between 14 and 16 without an employment certificate, to work“ in or in connection with any factory” was applicable to employment in cannery sheds. The question having been raised in that year, however, an opinion of the Attorney-General was received which, while not entirely decisive, was regarded by the canners as holding that section 70 was not applicable to work in such sheds. This interpretation has been generally upheld by local magistrates and juries before whom prosecutions have been brought by the Department, and it became practically impossible to prevent child labor in cannery sheds.

In 1913, however, upon the recommendation of the Factory Investigating Commission the definition of the word “factory” in section 2 of the Labor Law was amended so as to include “ all buildings, sheds, structures or other places used for or in connection” with a factory.

a factory. At the same time, section 70 was amended so as to prohibit the above mentioned classes of children from working “in or in connection with any factory in this state, or for any factory at any place in this state.” The above changes were made with the canning industry specifically in mind. The effect of this amendment was simply to clear away any possible doubt as to whether the Labor Law applied to sheds.

What now was found by the inspectors in 1914 with reference to illegal employment of children in “sheds”? The most striking development found under the amended law was the erection in some cases, notably in two large plants, of tents in addition to the sheds, to which children were sent to snip beans on the theory that a tent would not be included in the definition of a factory as given in section 2 of the Labor Law. To cite a striking instance of such work, on August 10 an inspector discovered 211 children all under 16 years of age and none of whom had employment certificates, under a tent at one cannery. Of these, 180 were under 14 years

of
age

and a few were at work who were under 10 years

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