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(CHAPTER 676—30 SESSION]
[S. 2475) AN ACT To provide for the establishment of fair labor standards in employments in and affecting
interstate commerce, and for other purposes Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That this Act may be cited as the “Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938.”
FINDING AND DECLARATION OF POLICY SEC. 2. (a) The Congress hereby finds that the existence, in industries engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce, of labor conditions detrimental to the maintenance of the minimum standard of living necessary for health, efficiency, and general well-being of workers (1) causes commerce and the channels and instrumentalities of commerce to be used to spread and perpetuate such labor conditions among the ters of the several States; (2) burdens commerce and the free flow of goods in commerce; (3) constitutes an unfair method of competition in commerce; (4) leads to labor disputes burdening and obstructing commerce and the free flow of goods in commerce; and (5) interferes with the orderly and fair marketing of goods in commerce.
(b) It is hereby declared to be the policy of this Act, through the exercise by Congress of its power to regulate commerce among the several States, to correct and as rapidly as practicable to eliminate the conditions above referred to in such industries without substantially curtailing employment or earning power.
SEC. 3. As used in this Act,
(a) "Person" means an individual, partnership, association, corporation, business trust, legal representative, or any organized group of persons.
(b) “Commerce” means trade, commerce, transportation, transmission, or communication among the several States or from any State to any place outside thereof.
(c) "State” means any State of the United States or the District of Columbia or any Territory or possession of the United States.
(d) “Employer” includes any person acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer in relation to an employee but shall not include the United States or any State or political subdivision of a State, or any labor organization (other than when acting as an employer), or anyone acting in the capacity of officer or agent of such labor organization. (e) “Employee” includes any individual employed by an employer.
(f) “Agriculture” includes farming in all its branches and among other things includes the cultivation and tillage of the soil, dairying, the production, cultivation, growing, and harvesting of any agricultural or horticultural commodities (including commodities defined as agricultural commodities in section 15 (g) of the Agricultural Marketing Act, as amended), the raising of livestock, bees, furbearing animals, or poultry, and any practices (including any forestry or lumbering operations) performed by a farmer or on a farm as an incident to or in conjunction with such farming operations, including preparation for market, delivery to storage or to market or to carriers for transportation to market.
(g) “Employ” includes to suffer or permit to work.
(h) “Industry” means a trade, business, industry, or branch thereof, or group of industries, in which individuals are gainfully employed.
(i) “Goods” means goods (including ships and marine equipment), wares, products, commodities, merchandise, or articles or subjects of commerce of any character, or any part or ingredient thereof, but does not include goods after their delivery into the actual physical possession of the ultimate consumer thereof other than a producer, manufacturer, or processor thereof.
(j) “Produced means produced, manufactured, mined, handled, or in any other manner worked on in any State; and for the purposes of this Act an employee shall be deemed to have been engaged in the production of goods if such employee was employed in producing, manufacturing, mining, handling, transporting, or in any other manner working on such goods, or in any process or occupation necessary to the production thereof, in any State.
(k). "Sale” or “sell” includes any sale, exchange, contract to sell, consignment for sale, shipment for sale, or other disposition.
(1) “Oppressive child labor” means a condition of employment under which (1) any employee under the age of sixteen years is employed by an employer (other than a parent or a person standing in place of a parent employing his own child or a child in his custody under the age of sixteen years in an occupation other than manufacturing or mining) in any occupation, or (2) any employee between the ages of sixteen and eighteen years is employed by an employer in any occupation which the Chief of the Children's Bureau in the Department of Labor shall find and by order declare to be particularly hazardous for the employment of children between such ages or detrimental to their health or well-being; but oppressive child labor shall not be deemed to exist by virtue of the employment in any occupation of any person with respect to whom the employer shall have on file an unexpired certificate issued and held pursuant to regulations of the Chief of the Children's Bureau certifying that such person is above the oppressive child-labor age. The Chief of the Children's Bureau shall provide by regulation or by order that the employment of employees between the ages of iourteen and sixteen years in occupations other than manufacturing and mining shall not be deemed to constitute oppressive child labor if and to the extent · that the Chief of the Children's Bureau determines that such employment is confined to periods which will not interfere with their schooling and to conditions which will not interfere with their health and well-being.
(m) “Wage” paid to any employee includes the reasonable cost, as determined by the Administrator, to the employer of furnishing such employee with board, lodging, or other facilities, if such board, lodging, or other facilities are customarily furnished by, such employer to his employees.
SEC. 4. (a) There is hereby created in the Department of Labor a Wage and Hour Division which shall be under the direction of an Administrator, to be known as the Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division (in this Act referred to as the “Administrator”). The Administrator shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, and shall receive compensation at the rate of $10,000 a year.
(b) The Administrator may, subject to the civil-service laws, appoint such employees as he deems necessary to carry out his functions and duties under this Act and shall fix their compensation in accordance with the Classification Act of 1923, as amended. The Administrator may establish and utilize such regional, local, or other agencies, and utilize such voluntary and uncompensated services, as may from time to time be needed. Attorneys appointed under this section may appear for and represent the Administrator in any litigation, but all such litigation shall be subject to the direction and control of the Attorney General. In the appointment, selection, classification, and promotion of officers and employees of the Administrator, no political test or qualification shall be permitted or given consideration, but all such appointments and promotions shall be given and made on the basis of merit and efficiency.
(c) The principal office of the Administrator shall be in the District of Columbia, but he or his duly authorized representative may exercise any or all of his powers in any place.
(d) The Administrator shall submit annually in January a report to the Congress covering his activities for the preceding year and including such information, data, and recommendations for further legislation in connection with the matters covered by this Act as he may find advisable.
SEC. 5. (a) The Administrator shall as soon as practicable appoint an industry committee for each industry engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce.
(b) An industry committee shall be appointed by the Administrator without regard to any other provisions of law regarding the appointment and compensation of employees of the United States. It shall include a number of disinterested persons representing the public, one of whom the Administrator shall designate as chairman, a like number of persons representing employees in the industry, and a like number representing employers in the industry. In the appointment of the persons representing each group, the Administrator shall give due regard to the geographical regions in which the industry is carried on.
(c) Two-thirds of the members of an industry committee shall constitute a quorum, and the decision of the committee shall require a vote of not less than a majority of all its members. Members of an industry committee shall receive as compensation for their services a reasonable per diem, which the Administrator shall by rules and regulations prescribe, for each day actually spent in the work of the committee, and shall in addition be reimbursed for their necessary traveling and other expenses. The Administrator shall furnish the committee with adequate legal, stenographic, clerical, and other assistance, and shall by rules and regulations prescribe the procedure to be followed by the committee.
(d) The Administrator shall submit to an industry committee from time to time such data as he may have available on the matters referred to it, and shall cause to be brought before it in connection with such matters any witnesses whom he deems material. An industry committee may summon other witnesses or call upon the Administrator to furnish additional information to aid it in its deliberations.
(e) No industry committee appointed under subsection (a) of this section shall have any power to recommend the minimum rate or rates of wages to be paid under section 6 to any employees in Puerto Rico or in the Virgin Islands. Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, the Administrator may appoint a special industry committee to recommend the minimum rate or rates of wages to be paid under section 6 to all employees in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands, or in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce, or the Administrator may appoint separate industry committees to recommend the minimum rate or rates of wages to be paid under section 6 to employees therein engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce in particular industries. An industry committee appointed under this subsection shall be composed of residents of such island or islands where the employees with respect to whom such committee was appointed are employed and residents of the United States outside of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. In determining the minimum rate or rates of wages to be paid, and in determining classifications, such industry committees and the Administrator shall be subject to the provisions of section 8 and no such committee shall recommend, nor shall the Administrator approve, a minimum wage rate which will give any industry in Puerto Rico or in the Virgin Islands a competitive advantage over any industry in the United States outside of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
No wage orders issued by the Administrator pursuant to the recommendations of an industry committee made prior to the enactment of this joint resolution pursuant to section 8 of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 shall after such enactment be applicable with respect to any employees engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands.
MINIMUM WAGES SEC. 6. (a) Every employer shall pay to each of his employees who is engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce wages at the following, rates
(1) during the first year from the effective date of this section, not less than 25 cents an hour,
(2) during the next six years from such date, not less than 30 cents an
(3) after the expiration of seven years from such date, not less than 40 cents an hour, or the rate (not less than 30 cents an hour) prescribed in the applicable order of the Administrator issued under section 8, whichever is lower, and
(4) at any time after the effective date of this section, not less than the rate (not in excess of 40 cents an hour) prescribed in the applicable order of the Administrator issued under section 8,
(5) if such employee is a home worker in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands, not less than the minimum piece rate prescribed by regulation or order; or, if no such minimum piece rate is in effect, any piece rate adopted by such employer which shall yield, to the proportion or class of employees prescribed by regulation or order, not less than the applicable minimum hourly wage rate. Such minimum piece rates or employer piece rates shall be commensurate with, and shall be paid in lieu of, the minimum hourly wage rate applicable under the provisions of this section. The Administrator, or his orders as are necessary or appropriate to carry out any of the provisions of this paragraph, including the power without limiting the generality of the foregoing, to define any operation or occupation which is performed by such home work employees in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands; to establish minimum piece rates for any operation or occupation so defined; to prescribe the method and procedure for ascertaining and promulgating minimum piece rates; to prescribe standards for employer piece rates, including the proportion or class of employees who shall receive not less than the minimum hourly wage rate; to define the term “home worker”; and to prescribe the conditions under which employers, agents, contractors, and subcontractors shall cause
authorized representative, shall have power to make such regulations or 1 Amendment provided by act of June 26, 1940 (Public Res. No. 88, 76th Cong.)
goods to be produced by home workers.2 (b) This section shall take effect upon the expiration of one hundred and twenty days from the date of enactment of this Act.
(c) The provisions of paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of subsection (a) of this section shall be superseded in the case of any employee in Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce only for so long as and insofar as such employee is covered by a wage order issued by the Administrator pursuant to the recommendations of a special industry committee appointed pursuant to section 5 (e).1
Sec. 7. (a) No employer shall, except as otherwise provided in this section, employ any of his employees who is engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce —
(1) for a workweek longer than forty-four hours during the first year from the effective date of this section,
(2) for a workweek longer than forty-two hours during the second year from such date, or
(3) for a workweek longer than forty hours after the expiration of the
second year from such date, unless such employee receives compensation for his employment in excess of the hours above specified at a rate not less than one and one-half times the regular rate at which he is employed.
(b) No employer shall be deemed to have violated subsection (a) by employing any employee for a workweek in excess of that specified in such subsection without paying the compensation for overtime employment prescribed therein if such employee is so employed —
(1) in pursuance of an agreement, made as a result of collective bargaining by representatives of employees certified as bona fide by the National Labor Relations Board, which provides that no employee shall be employed more than one thousand hours during any period of twenty-six consecutive weeks,
(2) on an annual basis in pursuance of an agreement with his employer made as a result of collective bargaining by representatives of employees certified as bona fide by the National Labor Relations Board, which provides that the employee shall not be employed more than two thousand and eighty hours during any period of fifty-two consecutive weeks,3 or
(3) for a period or periods of not more than fourteen workweeks in the aggregate in any calendar year in an industry found by the Administrator to
be of a seasonal nature. and if such employee receives compensation for employment in excess of 12 hours in any workday, or for employment in excess of 56 hours in any workweek, as the case may be, at a rate not less than one and one-half times the regular rate at which he is employed.
(c) In the case of an employer engaged in the first processing of milk, whey, skimmed milk, or cream into dairy products, or in the ginning and compressing of cotton, or in the processing of cottonse or in the processing of sugar beets, sugar beet molasses, sugar-cane, or maple sap, into sugar (but not refined sugar) or into syrup, the provisions of subsection (a) shall not apply to his employees in any place of employment where he is so engaged; and in the case of an employer engaged in the first processing of, or in canning or packing, perishable or seasonal fresh fruits or vegetables, or in the first processing, within the area of production (as defined by the Administrator), of any agricultural or horticultural commodity during seasonal operations, or in handling, slaughtering, or dressing poultry or * livestock, the provisions of subsection (a), during a period or periods of not more than fourteen workweeks in the aggregate in any calendar year, shall not apply to his employees in any place of employment where he is so engaged.
1 Amendment provided by act of June 26, 1940 (Public Res. No. 88, 76th Cong.). 3 Amendment provided by act of October 29, 1941 (Public Law 283, 77th Cong.)
(d) This section shall take effect upon the expiration of one hundred and twenty days from the date of enactment of this Act.
SEC. 8. (a) With a view to carrying out the policy of this Act by reaching, as rapidly as is economically feasible, without substantially curtailing employment, the objective of a universal minimum wage of 40 cents an hour in each industry engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce, the Administrator shall from time to time convene the industry committee for each such industry, and the industry committee shall from time to time recommend the minimum rate or rates of wages to be paid under section 6 by employers engaged in commerce or in the production of goods for commerce in such industry or classifications therein.
(b) Upon the convening of an industry committee, the Administrator shall refer to it the question of the minimum wage rate or rates to be fixed for such industry. The industry committee shall investigate conditions in the industry and the committee, or any authorized subcommittee thereof, may hear suc witnesses and receive such evidence as may be necessary or appropriate to enable the committee to perform its duties and functions under this Act. The committee shall recommend to the Administrator the highest minimum wage rates for the industry which it determines. having due regard to economic and competitive conditions, will not substantially curtail employment in the industry.
(c) The industry committee for any industry shall recommend such reasonable classifications within any industry as it determines to be necessary for the purpose of fixing for each classification within such industry the highest minimum wage rate (not in excess of 40 cents an hour) which (1) will not substantially curtail employment in such classification and (2) will not give a competitive advantage to any group in the industry, and shall recommend for each classification in the industry the highest minimum wage rate which the committee determines will not substantially curtail employment in such classification. In determining whether such classifications should be made in any industry, in making such classifications, and in determining the minimum wage rates for such classifications, no classification shall be made, and no minimum wage rate shall be fixed, solely on a regional basis, but the industry committee and the Administrator shall consider among other relevant factors the following:
(1) competitive conditions as affected by transportation, living, and production costs;
(2) the wages established for work of like or comparable character by collective labor agreements negotiated between employers and employees by representatives of their own choosing; and
(3) the wages paid for work of like or comparable character by employers
who voluntarily maintain minimum-wage standards in the industry. No classification shall be made under this section on the basis of age or sex.
(d) The industry committee shall file with the Administrator a report containing its recommendations with respect to the matters referred to it. Upon the filing of such report, the Administrator, after due notice to interested persons, and giving them an opportunity to be heard, shall by order approve and carry into effect the recommendations contained in such report, if he finds that the recommendations are made in accordance with law, are supported by the evidence adduced at the hearing, and, taking into consideration the same factors as are required to be considered by the industry committee, will carry out the purposes of this section; otherwise he shall disapprove such recommendations. If the Administrator disapproves such recommendations, he shall again refer the matter to such committee, or to another industry committee for such industry (which he may appoint for such purpose), for further consideration and recommendations.
(e) No order issued under this section with respect to any industry prior to the expiration of seven years from the effective date of section 6 shall remain in effect after such expiration, and no order shall be issued under this section with respect to any industry on or after such expiration, unless the industry committee by a preponderance of the evidence before it recommends, and the Administrator by a preponderance of the evidence adduced at the hearing finds, that the continued effectiveness or the issuance of the order, as the case may be, is necessary in order to prevent substantial curtailment of employment in the industry.
(f) Orders issued under this section shall define the industries and classifications therein to which they are to apply, and shall contain such terms and conditions as