DOL Department of Labor Guide

The Department of Labor in the United States (DOL) is a department in the U.S. federal government that is mandated with ensuring that matters pertaining to wage and hour standards, occupational safety, reemployment services and unemployment insurance benefits are adhered to, as provided in the US constitution. This department is usually headed by the Secretary of Labor.

What does the department of labor do?

This is the department that is mandated with the promotion and development of the general wellbeing of job seekers, wage earners and retirees across the country. In order to achieve its mandate, the department advocates for better working conditions for all employees as well as advanced opportunities that results to profitable employments. DOL also assures employees of total protection for all their work-related rights and benefits. To ensure that the Department of Labor is accomplishing its mission, it administers and enforces over 180 federal laws plus so many federal regulations which employers must adhere to. These regulations and mandates are implemented in order to cover the many workplaces located in different parts of the country as well as protect the over 10 million employers plus over 125 million employees. Generally, the general welfare of wage earners, job seekers and retirees in the country is in the hands of the US Department of labor. Other than protecting their rights and promoting healthy working conditions as the main department of labor purpose, the department is also concerned about the hourly wage and payment of overtime. The department also ensures that there is no employment discrimination and that unemployed workers are getting income support and unemployment insurance to ensure that they are paying their bills before they find suitable employment.

The federal department of labor laws

Every state in the United States has very specific laws that deal with issues such as child labor. This means that there are both state and federal labor laws and in cases where they differ, the laws that provide the most protection to workers will apply. Employers are required to comply to both state and federal laws. In general, these laws govern workplace safety and health of workers, payment of wages and how much money should be paid for overtime; workers compensation and employee benefit security. In matters pertaining employee protection these federal laws will advocate for the formation of unions among other things.

Department of labor agencies

The department of labor is an organization with so many functions and to be able to carry out its mission, a number of agencies and offices have been established. DOL agencies have been organized into different program areas, each of which is headed by an assistant secretary of another official. These are for instance:
  • The Office of the Secretary
  • The Administrative Review Board
  • The Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB)
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
  • Centers for Faith and Opportunity Initiatives (CFOI)
  • Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA)
  • Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)
  • Employees' Compensation Appeals Board (ECAB)
  • Mine Safety & Health Administration (MSHA)
Employment & Training Administration (ETA)