Current restrictions on teenage employment in each state and territory

Following on from the Jobs and Skills Summit, the ARA continues to advocate for a nationally aligned approach to employment for teenaged workers, which would provide workplace benefits to teenagers across the country and target labour shortages in areas where teenaged workers can acquire valuable digital and working skills.

Below is a synopsis of the current restrictions on teenage employment in each state and territory.

Whilst this is not an exhaustive resource, it displays the enormity of variation from state to state and the need for a nationally consistent approach to how teenage workers can be welcomed to the workforce.

You can view how this priority of ARA Policy and Advocacy fits into our overarching ideas for the Australian workplace here.

ACT Technically no minimum age, but standards for all employees under 18, with specific restrictions for children under 15.

Limits on shift length and hours children can work.

Parental consent is needed for those under 15s.

NSW Technically no minimum age, but restrictions on workweek length and shift times for under 15s (school + work cannot be greater than 50 hours in a 7-day week).

Stringent recordkeeping requirements during and after employment

NT Technically no minimum age for casual or part-time.

Restrictions on work times and allowable duties for under 15s, as well as 15-17-year-olds

QLD Minimum age 11 for newspaper runs, 13 for elsewhere.

4-hour shift limits mid-term, 8 hours on holidays.

12 hours maximum each week mid-term, up to 38 during holidays.

SA No minimum age, but restrictions on school-age children working hours relative to their education.

Restrictions on what duties children can perform until they turn 16.

TAS No minimum age

Restrictions for children under 11 to prevent them selling in a public space,

Restrictions for children under 14 for working hours, and all children under 18 for conflicts with education obligations.

VIC No child under 11 can be employed, and children must be 13 before working in non-delivery roles.

Permits required from Wage Inspectorate office for employment of children under 15.

Heavy restrictions on working hours and maximum shift lengths

WA Parental permission is required until 15, with a minimum age of 10.

Different allowable roles for 10-12-year-olds, 13-15-year-olds and 15+

Restrictions on hours also change with each age group.


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