Health & Wellness

North Dakota cares about the health and well being of their young people. After all, they will be the one’s running this state someday. That’s why we offer so many different programs to help our neighbors out. Here are a few resources for North Dakotans who just need a little help:

  • National Guard Youth Support Services Here you can find information on building relationships with your children while deployed, information such as stress management, health and fitness, and how to deal with your parents deployment. You can find information on books for military children and much more.
  • Healthy Steps Insurance This free insurance program is for children 18 and younger, who do not have health insurance, do not qualify for the North Dakota Medicaid Program, and live in families with qualifying incomes.
  • Children Mental Health Services Children’s Mental Health System of Care in North Dakota provides therapeutic and supportive services to children with serious emotional disturbance (SED) and their families so they can manage their illness and live in the community in the least restrictive setting.
  • High Risk High – Youth Drinking in ND High Risk High is a radio and web project about youth drinking in North Dakota. If you are a student, a teacher, a parent, or just interested in the topic, this website created by Prairie Public is for you.
  • I Keep Safe The Internet Keep Safe Coalition is a broad partnership of governors and/or first spouses, attorneys general, public health and educational professionals, law enforcement, and industry leaders working together for the health and safety of youth online.  iKeepSafe® uses these unique partnerships to disseminate safety resources to families worldwide.
  • Build a Healthy ND Healthy North Dakota and its network of partners are working to help North Dakota’s children grow to be as healthy and productive as possible through efforts to reduce childhood obesity and improve nutrition and physical activity.
  • ND Teen Drivers– Here you will find information for teen drivers and their parents to encourage behaviors that will make them better drivers.  This is hosted by the NDDOT.
  • ND Youth – This website was created especially for youth who are involved in foster care, juvenile justice and mental health systems and will soon be living on their own.
  • Teen Sex Awareness – The site addresses myths, what happens during an exam, what are STD’s and frequently asked questions.
  • Children’s Special Health Services – Here you can find more information about services and resources available for children and youth with special health care needs in ND.  You can easily connect to other sites that provide information to support transition to adult health care, work, and independence.
  • Mental Health America of North Dakota  Mental Health America of ND provides quality, culturally competent services and support to all North Dakotans.  On this website, there is information about education programs, support groups, a resource library, online depression screening and where to go for additional help.

Teen Safety In the Workplace

Accidents are preventable and you don’t need to become a statistic!

Workers — Who Me? from LOHP on Vimeo.

Youth Worker Injury Statistics

Every 30 seconds a teen is injured on the job
One teen dies from a workplace injury every 5 days
Nearly 200,000 teens are injured on the job every year
100,000 teens require emergency room treatment
In the U.S. there is an average of 4.5 youth deaths per 100,000 workers
Three-fourth of young worker injury claims occur in the first 30 days of employment
Workers with less than 1 year of experience account for 1/3 of all occupational injuries each year.

North Dakota Youth Worker Injury Statistics*

There were 18,447 claims filed for youth ages 14-24
Top 5 body parts injured: 1. Eyes 2. Finger(s) 3. Hand(s) 4. Lower Back 5. Knee(s)
Top 5 causes of injuries: 1. Hand Tool, Utensil; Not powered 2. Objects being lifted or handled 3. Lifting 4. Misc. Strain 5. Foreign body in eye
Top 5 injuries to this group: 1. Contusion 2. Foreign Body 3. Lacerations 4. Sprain 5. Strain

Five Worst Teen Jobs

Agriculture: Agricultural workers aged 15-17 are four times more likely to incur fatal injuries than those in other occupations.
Construction & Work in Heights: The most common types of fatal falls occur from working at heights of 6 feet and above, usually from rooftops, ladders, scaffolding or staging.
Outside Helper: Working in landscaping, grounds keeping and lawn service.
Driver/Operator of Forklifts, Tractors & ATVs: Injuries and resulting fatalities occur when minors are operating or riding as passengers, or are working near such machines.
Traveling Youth Crews: Young people who are recruited to sell candy, magazines, and other door-to-door items under dangerous conditions, and without adult supervision, may be more vulnerable to assaults and abductions by customers and strangers.

What hazards should I watch out for?

As a young worker, you should be aware of your workplace hazards. If you work in a construction area, at an office desk, or in a fast food restaurant, and the many other areas available to students each have their own particular hazards to be aware of. It is important to know these hazards, and to know your rights and duties when it comes to encountering them. Here are just a few of the hazards that may be encountered, but there are many more not listed.

Types of Hazards

Chemicals – possible exposed in a Janitorial setting

  • Liquids (office supplies, cleaning products, paints, acids)
  • Vapors and fumes ( welding fumes, paints)
  • Gases (propane, carbon monoxide)
  • Flammable, combustible, and explosive materials


  • Electricity
  • Noise and vibration
  • Heat and cold
  • Dust
  • Radiation
  • Exposed moving machinery parts


  • Unclean restrooms
  • Improperly  stored medical waste
  • Mold, fungus, and mildew
  • Bacteria and viruses
  • Plants ( i.e. poison ivy)
  • Animal bites


  • Lighting
  • Lifting
  • Work surfaces
  • Chairs
  • Posture
  • Shift work

Psycho-social hazards are usually cause the worker some sort of stress and will sometimes cause the worker to experience psychological and behavioral changes such as hostility and anxiety or psychosomatic ill heal including fatigue and headaches.

  • Conflict at home or in the workplace
  • Harassment – mental, physical, emotional
  • Demanding shift schedule
  • Lack of support
  • Job insecurity
  • Lack of control

What are some of my rights on the job?

By law, your employer must provide:

  • A safe and healthful workplace.
  • Training about health and safety, including information on chemicals that could be harmful to your health.
  • Training about what to do in an emergency.
  • Protective clothing and equipment, such as gloves or goggles.
  • Payment for medical care if you get hurt or sick because of your job. You may also be entitled to lost wages.
  • At least the minimum wage, $7.25 an hour.

You also have a right to:

  • Report safety problems to WSI, the state agency that enforces workplace health and safety regulations.
  • Work without racial or sexual harassment.
  • Refuse to work if the job is immediately dangerous to your life or health.
  • Join or organize a union.

Is it okay to do any kind of work?

When You Are 13 or Younger . . .

You can deliver newspapers.
You can work as a baby-sitter.
You can work as an actor or performer in motion pictures, television, theater or radio.
You can work in a business solely owned or operated by your parents.

You can work on a farm doing agriculture work.

However, parents are prohibited from employing their children in manufacturing, mining, or any other occupation declared hazardous (listed below) by the Secretary of Labor under Federal Law.

More information on Exemptions from Child Labor Rules.

When You Turn 14 . . .

You also can work in an:

  • office,
  • grocery store,
  • retail store,
  • restaurant,
  • movie theater,
  • baseball park,
  • amusement park, or
  • gasoline service station.

You generally may not work in:

  • communications or public utilities jobs,
  • construction or repair jobs,
  • driving a motor vehicle or helping a driver,
  • manufacturing and mining occupations,
  • power-driven machinery or hoisting apparatus other than typical office machines,
  • processing occupations,
  • public messenger jobs,
  • door-to-door sales,
  • sign waving,
  • transporting of persons or property,
  • workrooms where products are manufactured, mined or processed, or
  • warehousing and storage.

Babysitting in domestic service does not constitute employment unless it involves 20 or more hours of work for 3 or more consecutive weeks.
In addition, you may not work any other job or occupation declared hazardous (listed below) by the Secretary of Labor.

Teens may be exempt from some or all of the state youth employment rules under certain conditions:

  1. They are exempt from the minimum age (14) and from the need for a work permit if they work for and under the direct supervision of their parent or guardian and if that person is 100 percent owner of the business.
  1. They are exempt from the restricted hours and the need for a work permit if they are exempt from compulsory school attendance because they have completed the requirements for graduation, because they are needed to help financially support their family, or because they cannot be taught in a mainstream classroom due to a disability.
  2. They are exempt from the minimum age, restricted hours, and the need for a work permit if they work in domestic service (performing services of a household nature in or about the employer’s private home).

They are exempt from all youth employment provisions if they work in agricultural employment. When You Turn 16 . . .

You can work in any job or occupation that has not been declared hazardous by the Secretary of Labor.

Hazardous Occupations

You generally may not work in any of the following hazardous occupations:

  • manufacturing and storing of explosives,
  • driving a motor vehicle and being an outside helper on a motor vehicle;
  • coal mining,
  • forest fire fighting and prevention, timber tract management, or forestry services,
  • logging and sawmilling,
  • operating power-driven woodworking machines,
  • exposure to radioactive substances,
  • operating power-driven hoisting apparatus,
  • operating power-driven metal-forming, punching, and shearing machines,
  • mining, other than coal mining,
  • meat packing or processing (including the use of power-driven meat slicing machines),
  • power-driven bakery machines,
  • balers, compactors, and power-driven paper-product machines, scrap paper balers, and paper box compactors,
  • manufacturing brick, tile, and related products,
  • power-driven circular saws, band saws, guillotine shears, chain saws, reciprocative saws, wood chippers, and abrasive cutting discs,
  • wrecking, demolition, and shipbreaking operations,
  • roofing operations and all work on or about a roof, or
  • excavation operations.

There are some exemptions for apprentice/student-learner programs in some of these hazardous occupations.

More information on Prohibited Occupations.

When You Turn 18 . . .

You can work in any job for any number of hours. The child labor rules no longer apply to you. Different rules apply to farms.

Do I need a work permit in ND?

The North Dakota Department of Labor enforces state youth employment laws. These laws establish a minimum age of 14 to be employed in North Dakota and place limitations on the employment of teens ages 14 and 15, specifically:

Require 14 and 15 year-old workers to file an Employment and Age Certificate with the Department of Labor. This form is commonly referred to as a “work permit” and contains sections to be completed by the worker, the worker’s parent or guardian, and the employer. It is specific to each job held and a new certificate must be filed when a 14 or 15 year-old worker changes jobs. Forms are available from the Department of Labor’s office and web site. Job Service North Dakota offices and County School Superintendents’ offices may also have a supply.

What are my safety responsibilities on the job?

To work safely you should:

  • Follow all safety rules and instructions
  • Use safety equipment and protective clothing when needed
  • Keep work areas clean and neat
  • Know what to do in an emergency
  • Report any health and safety hazards to your supervisor
  • Get help if your supervisor won’t listen or correct an unsafe condition

What if I am being sexually harassed at work?

Sexual Harassment is defined by the Fair Employment and Housing Commission as unwanted sexual advances, or visual, verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. This means someone is doing something sexual that makes you uncomfortable — if you don’t want it, it’s illegal.

Sexual harassment includes any unwelcome sexual conduct that either:

  • is made a term or condition of employment;
  • has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individuals work performance; or
  • creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

Sexual harassment includes:

  • Unwelcome touching or patting
  • Suggestive remarks or other verbal abuse (such as telling sexual stories loud enough that you overhear)
  • Staring or leering
  • Requests for sexual favors
  • Offensive work environment (such as calendars with naked pictures)

It is your employer’s responsibility to:

  • Stop and prevent sexual harassment in the workplace by co-workers, supervisors, or clients
  • thoroughly and promptly Investigate all employee complaints and take appropriate action
  • Provide sexual harassment training to all staff

What can I do?

  • Say “NO” clearly
  • Document the harassment
  • Get support from family, friends, and/or co-workers
  • Look for witnesses and other victims
  • File a complaint with your employer — you cannot legally be punished or fired for filing a complaint — your job is protected by law
  • If it is not resolved, file a complaint with the North Dakota Department of Labor
  •  Sexual Harassment Brochure from the North Dakota Department of Labor.

What if I am being discriminated against?

It is illegal for employers to discriminate against their workers. Employers also have the responsibility to make sure there is no discrimination in the workplace either by your coworkers or by the clients you serve. California state laws protect workers from being fired, from having job opportunities withheld, or from being otherwise unfairly treated on the basis of:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Ancestry
  • Gender
  • Religion
  • National origin (having an accent, looking “foreign”, being an immigrant)
  • Non-citizenship
  • Disability
  • Age (over 40. This protects older workers only–young people do experience age discrimination but are not protected by federal law)
  • Marital status
  • Pregnancy
  • Sexual Orientation

If you believe you have experienced employment discrimination you should:

  • Document the harassment or discrimination.
  • Learn about your rights and the law.
  • Get support from family and friends.
  • Talk to your supervisor. You can bring a supportive person with you if you want.
  • Look for witnesses and other victims.
  • File a complaint with your employer–you cannot legally be punished or fired for filing a complaint.
  • If it is not resolved, file a complaint with the North Dakota Department of Labor at 1-800–582-8032
  • Brochure on filing a complaint

What hours can I work?

In North Dakota, only 14 and 15 year olds are restricted to certain hours. If you are 16 or over these laws do not apply.

Work hours 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM from Labor Day through May 31
of 7:00 AM and 9:00 PM from June 1 through Labor Day
Maximum hours when school is in session 3 hours of work on a school day
8 hours a day on weekends, holidays
18 hours per school week*
Maximum when school is not in session 40 hours per week

*A school week is any week, Monday through Sunday, in which school attendance is required for any part of four or more days.

How can I make sure my job is safe?

Most jobs can be safe if employers:

  • Give you hands-on health and safety training
  • Work with you to identify and eliminate hazards
  • Give you protective equipment when needed
  • Follow safety laws and regulations

Most jobs can be safe if workers:

  • Follow safety rules
  • Report hazards

What if I have a problem at work?

Here are some basic steps you could take to help you solve problems at work:

  • Get advice and support from co-workers, family members, teachers, your job training representative, or other responsible adults.
  • Find out all you can about the problem. Are any laws being broken? If so, which ones? Think about possible solutions and try to decide how effective they would be.
  • Decide what solution is best and work towards that goal.
  • Approach your supervisor politely. Suggest solutions. Bring someone with you for support if you wish.
  • If your employer won’t listen or correct the problem, you can contact one of these California government agencies and file a complaint. The local number can be found in the State Government pages of your phone book.
    • WSI  for information about making a health or safety complaint(701) 328−6028
    • North Dakota Department of Labor to make a complaint about wages or work hours, or to make a complaint about discrimination. 1-800-582-8032

What if I get hurt on the job?

  1.  Notify your employer immediately of the accident and your injury. By law, you must give written or oral notice to your employer within seven days of an accident or after the general nature of your injury becomes apparent. If you fail to notify your employer, Workforce Safety & Insurance (WSI) may consider that failure when deciding whether your claim will be accepted. NOTE: Even if you feel your injury is not serious enough to need medical treatment, it is important you report your accident to your employer so they are informed of the potential hazard.
  2. Seek first aid or medical attention promptly after a workplace injury. If your employer does not have a Designated Medical Provider (DMP), you may go to a doctor of your choice. If your employer does have a DMP, you are required to see your employer’s DMP, UNLESS you informed your employer, in writing, of a different medical provider before any injury occurred. Contact your employer or WSI for more detailed information about this requirement. Emergency medical treatment is exempt from the DMP requirement. Inform the doctor that your injury is a workers’ compensation injury. Also, inform the doctor of your work duties and ask if you can return to work within any work restrictions the doctor may impose. Follow restrictions, both on and off the job.
  3. File a claim with WSI immediately after a work-related injury occurs (within 24 hours of occurrence). Use one of three methods: 1) online at, available 24 hours/weekends/holidays (follow online instructions); 2) by hand by completing the First Report of Injury (FROI) Form, or 3) telephonically by calling 1-800-777-5033, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. on business days.
  4. Whichever claim filing method is used, complete the FROI form with your employer, if possible. Answer all questions fully and honestly on the form. Be sure to have your employer complete the employer’s portion of the FROI form. If you have received benefits for an injury and are now off work again for that same injury, you must reapply for benefits in writing. Contact WSI and request a Worker’s Notice of Reapplication (C4) form.
  5. WSI will inform you of your claim number, in writing, upon registering your claim. Be sure to always inform the pharmacy and medical provider of your claim number.
  6. Keep in touch with your employer and provide them with periodic updates on your condition.
  7. Notify WSI immediately: 1) when you perform any type of work activity, whether you receive pay for it or not; 2) if you change your address or telephone number; or 3) if you apply for either Social Security disability or retirement benefits or are found to be eligible for these benefits.

This is just information. Please do not take this as legal advice. For the most accurate child labor laws visit the North Dakota Department of Labor and for questions about safety at work contact Workforce Safety & Insurance.

*(Data range is from 1/06-10/10)

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