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The following suggested Employment Standards and Labour Relations Information are reprinted with permission courtesy of Government of Alberta Employment Standards.


Adolescents, those 12, 13 or 14 years of age, may be employed without a permit from the Director of Employment Standards as a:

  • delivery person of small wares deliveries for a retail store,
  • clerk or messenger in an office,
  • clerk in a retail store,
  • delivery person for the distribution of newspapers, flyers, or handbills, and
  • the following occupations in the restaurant and food services industry, with special conditions: host/hostess duties; cashier duties; dish washing; bussing tables; waiting on tables; providing customer service; assembling orders; and cleaning.

For any other type of work, permission from the Director of Employment Standards must be obtained, in addition to written parental consent, before an adolescent can be employed.

A parent or guardian of an adolescent must always provide the employer with written consent before the adolescent may be employed and begin working.

The employer must ensure that the employment is not, or is not likely to be, injurious to the life, health, education or welfare of the adolescent.

Adolescents can work a maximum of:

  • 2 hours on a school day, and
  • 8 hours on a non-school day, and cannot work between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.
  • Adolescents must be paid at least minimum wage

Click here for information on minimum age laws across Canada

Young Persons

Young persons are those 15, 16 or 17 years of age. In certain types of employment, there are restrictions as to what hours a young person can work and to the level of supervision required. If a young person is employed in a:

  • hotel, motel or other place that provides overnight accommodation to the public, or
  • the premises of any retail business selling:
    • food or beverages, whether alcoholic or not,
    • any other commodities, goods, wares or merchandise, or
    • gasoline, diesel fuel, propane or any other petroleum product,

the young person must work with, and in the continuous presence of at least one individual 18 years of age or older during the hours of 9:00 p.m. to midnight.The young person cannot work at all in these types of employment from midnight to 6:00 a.m. For more information about employment standards, including the employment of adolescents and young persons:
Click: Government of Alberta Employment Standards , or
Call: (780) 427-3731, toll-free by dialing 310-0000

Employees must be paid earnings at least once per month, and not later than 10 days after the end of each pay period.

Employees must receive at least eight hours rest when changing from one shift to another. During each shift in excess of five consecutive hours of work, an employee is entitled to at least 30 minutes of rest, paid or unpaid. Shorter breaks totalling 30 minutes are acceptable. Some exceptions apply, such as emergencies or where different rest provisions are agreed to under a collective agreement.

In Alberta, employees have the right to bargain collectively with their employers. The Labour Relations Code guarantees this right and establishes methods for employees to choose trade union representation.

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