HARRISBURG – Lehigh County Rep. Ryan Mackenzie has introduced a bill increasing penalties for child labor law violations and improving reporting requirements. The U.S. Department of Labor reported a 69% increase in the number of child labor law violations in the last five years. The PA Department of Labor also announced it has opened 276% more child labor cases since January than during the same period last year. Under House Bill 1714, a violation would be a second-degree misdemeanor if the violation was willful, and the employer knew or should have known the child was without proper parental supervision and took advantage of the situation. The Department of Labor would be required, when applicable, to cross-report violations to federal and child welfare authorities to ensure an at-risk minor is removed from a dangerous working or living situation. An annual report would be also required to detail the nature of violations, the locations, and the industries where violations are occurring. The bill is before the House Labor and Industry Committee.