Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 40.1. Labor and Employment
Chapter 6. Voluntary Apprenticeship
5/20/2022

Chapter 6. Voluntary Apprenticeship.

§ 40.1-117. Apprenticeship Council; membership and terms of office; meetings and duties.

A. The Governor shall appoint an Apprenticeship Council, composed of four representatives each from employer and employee organizations respectively, and all of whom shall be familiar with apprenticeable occupations. The Commissioner of the Virginia Employment Commission, the Chancellor of the Virginia Community College System, or their designated representatives, and a local superintendent from a school division that provides apprenticeship-related instruction, shall be members, ex officio, of the Council. At the beginning of each year the Governor shall designate one member to serve as chairman. Each member shall be appointed for a term of three years. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term of his predecessor shall be appointed for the remainder of such term. All members, including ex officio members, shall have voting privileges.

B. The Apprenticeship Council shall meet at the call of the chairman of the Council and shall formulate policies for the effective administration of this chapter.

C. The Apprenticeship Council shall establish standards for apprentice agreements which shall not be lower than those prescribed by this chapter and those established pursuant to Article 3 (§ 54.1-1128 et seq.) of Chapter 11 of Title 54.1, and shall perform such other functions as may be necessary to carry out the intent and purposes of this chapter. Not less than once a year the Council shall make a report of its activities and findings to the General Assembly and to the public.

Code 1950, § 40-123; 1968, c. 273; 1970, c. 321; 1978, c. 206; 1980, c. 728; 1981, c. 331; 1987, c. 165; 1992, c. 231.

§ 40.1-118. Authority of Council.

The Council may:

1. Determine standards for apprentice agreements, which standards shall not be lower than those prescribed by this chapter;

2. Appoint the secretary of the Apprenticeship Council to act as secretary of each state joint apprenticeship committee;

3. Review decisions of local joint apprenticeship committees relating to apprenticeship disputes pursuant to subdivision C 3 of § 40.1-119;

4. Perform such other duties as are necessary to carry out the intent of this chapter; and

5. Advise the Commissioner on policies to coordinate apprenticeship-related instruction delivered by state and local public education agencies.

Code 1950, § 40-124; 1970, c. 321; 1978, c. 206; 1990, c. 614; 1996, cc. 134, 486; 2014, c. 734; 2015, cc. 63, 86.

§ 40.1-119. Local and state joint apprenticeship committees.

A. A local joint apprenticeship committee may be established in any trade or group of trades in a city or trade area whenever the apprentice training needs of such trade or group of trades justify such establishment.

B. When two or more local joint apprenticeship committees have been established in the state for a trade or group of trades or at the request of any trade or group of trades, a state apprenticeship committee may be established for such trade or group of trades. Such local and state joint apprenticeship committees shall be composed of an equal number of employer and employee representatives chosen from names submitted by the respective employer and employee organizations in such trade or group of trades. In a trade or group of trades in which there is no bona fide employer or employee organization, the committee shall be appointed from persons known to represent the interests of employers and of employees respectively.

C. The functions of a local joint apprenticeship committee shall be:

1. To cooperate with school authorities in regard to the education of apprentices;

2. In accordance with standards established by the Apprenticeship Council, to establish local standards of apprenticeship regarding schedule of operations, application of wage rates, working conditions for apprentices, and the number of apprentices which shall be employed locally in the trade; and

3. To adjust apprenticeship disputes.

D. The functions of a state trade apprenticeship committee shall be to assist in an advisory capacity in the development of statewide standards of apprenticeship and in the development of local standards and local committees.

Code 1950, § 40-125; 1970, c. 321; 1990, c. 614; 2014, c. 734.

§ 40.1-120. Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the following meanings unless the context indicates otherwise:

"Apprenticeable occupation" means a skilled occupation having the following characteristics:

1. It is customarily learned in a practical way through a structured systematic program of on-the-job supervised work experience;

2. It is clearly identifiable and recognized throughout an industry;

3. It involves manual, mechanical or technical skills which require a minimum of 2,000 hours of on-the-job work experience of new apprenticeable trades not otherwise established; and

4. It requires related instruction to supplement the on-the-job work experience.

"Apprentice" means a person at least 16 years of age who is covered by a written agreement with an employer and approved by the Commissioner. The agreement shall provide for not less than 2,000 hours of reasonably continuous employment for such person, for his participation in an approved schedule of work experience through employment, and for the amount of related instruction required in the occupation.

"Employer" means any person or organization employing a registered apprentice, whether or not such person or organization is a party to an apprenticeship agreement with a sponsor.

"Joint apprenticeship committee" means a group equally representative of management and labor representatives which works under a bargaining agreement and is established to carry out the administration of an apprenticeship training program.

"Sponsor" means either an individual employer, a group of employers, or an association or organization operating an apprenticeship program, and in whose name the program is registered.

Code 1950, § 40-126; 1960, c. 336; 1970, c. 321; 1978, c. 206; 1990, c. 614; 2014, c. 734.

§ 40.1-120.1. Discrimination prohibitions for registered apprenticeship programs.

A. Notwithstanding the provisions of the Virginia Human Rights Act (§ 2.2-3900 et seq.), for purposes of this chapter a sponsor of a registered apprenticeship program shall not discriminate against an apprentice or applicant for apprenticeship on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age if the age of the individual is 40 years of age or older, genetic information, or disability.

B. Notwithstanding any other provisions of this title, it shall not be an unlawful practice for an employer to fail or refuse to hire and employ any individual for any position in a registered apprenticeship program, or for any registered apprenticeship program to fail or refuse to accept or admit any individual to any registered apprenticeship program, if:

1. The occupancy of such position, or access to the premises in or upon which any part of the duties of such position is performed or is to be performed, is subject to any requirement imposed in the interest of the national security of the United States under any security program in effect pursuant to or administered under any statute of the United States or any Executive Order of the President; and

2. Such individual has not fulfilled or has ceased to fulfill any requirement set forth in subdivision 1.

C. The sole remedy for a violation of subsection A shall be as provided in subdivision B 5 of § 40.1-125.

2020, c. 1228.

§ 40.1-121. Requisites of apprentice agreement.

Every apprentice agreement entered into under this chapter shall contain:

1. The names, signatures, and addresses of the contracting parties;

2. The date of birth of the apprentice;

3. The contact information of the Program Sponsor and the Division of Registered Apprenticeship;

4. A statement of the occupation or business that the apprentice is to be taught and the time at which the apprenticeship will begin and end;

5. A statement showing the number of hours to be spent by the apprentice in work and the number of hours to be spent in related or supplemental instruction;

6. A statement setting forth a schedule of the processes in the occupation or industry division in which the apprentice is to be taught and the approximate time to be spent at each process;

7. A statement of the graduated scale of wages to be paid the apprentice and whether the required related instruction shall be compensated;

8. A statement providing for a period of probation of not less than 500 hours of employment and instruction extending over not less than four months, during which time the apprentice agreement shall be terminated by the Commissioner at the request in writing of either party, and providing that after such probationary period the apprentice agreement may be terminated by the Commissioner by mutual agreement of all parties thereto, or cancelled by the Commissioner for good and sufficient reason;

9. A reference incorporating as part of the agreement the standards of the apprenticeship program as they exist on the date of the agreement and as they may be amended during the period of the agreement;

10. A statement that the apprentice will be accorded equal opportunity in all phases of apprenticeship employment and training without discrimination as provided in § 40.1-120.1;

11. Contact information, including name, address, phone number, and email if appropriate, of the appropriate authority designated under the program to receive, process, and make disposition of controversies or differences arising out of the apprenticeship agreement when the controversies or differences cannot be adjusted locally or resolved in accordance with the established procedure or applicable collective bargaining provisions;

12. A provision that an employer who is unable to fulfill his obligation under the apprentice agreement may, with the approval of the Commissioner, transfer such contract to any other employer if (i) the apprentice consents, (ii) such other employer agrees to assume the obligations of the apprentice agreement, and (iii) the transfer is reported to the registration agency within 30 days of the transfer; and

13. Such additional terms and conditions as may be prescribed or approved by the Commissioner not inconsistent with the provisions of this chapter.

Code 1950, § 40-127; 1960, c. 336; 1970, c. 321; 1990, c. 614; 2014, c. 734; 2020, c. 1228.

§ 40.1-122. Approval of agreement by Commissioner; signing.

No apprentice agreement under this chapter shall be effective until approved by the Commissioner. Every apprentice agreement shall be signed by the employer, or by an association of employers or an organization of employees as provided in § 40.1-124, and by the apprentice, and, if the apprentice is a minor, by the minor's father or mother, provided, that if both father and mother be dead or legally incapable of giving consent or have abandoned their children, then by the guardian of the minor.

Code 1950, § 40-128; 1970, c. 321; 1974, c. 272; 2014, c. 734.

§ 40.1-123. Agreement binding after apprentice's majority.

When a minor enters into an apprentice agreement under this chapter for a period of training extending into his majority, the apprentice agreement shall likewise be binding for such a period as may be covered during the apprentice's majority.

Code 1950, § 40-129; 1970, c. 321.

§ 40.1-124. Agreement signed by organization of employers or of employees.

For the purpose of providing greater diversity of training or continuity of employment, any apprentice agreement made under this chapter may in the discretion of the Commissioner be signed by an association of employers or an organization of employees instead of by an individual employer. In such a case the apprentice agreement shall expressly provide that the association of employers or organization of employees does not assume the obligation of an employer but agrees to use its best endeavors to procure employment and training for such apprentice with one or more employers who will accept full responsibility, as herein provided, for all the terms and conditions of employment and training set forth in the agreement between the apprentice and employer association or employee organization during the period of each such employment. The apprentice agreement in such a case shall also expressly provide for the transfer of the apprentice, subject to the approval of the Commissioner, to such employer or employers as shall sign a written agreement with the apprentice, and if the apprentice is a minor with his parent or guardian, as specified in § 40.1-122, contracting to employ the apprentice for the whole or a definite part of the total period of apprenticeship under the terms and conditions of employment and training set forth in the agreement entered into between the apprentice and the employer association or employee organization.

Code 1950, § 40-130; 1970, c. 321; 2014, c. 734.

§ 40.1-125. Commissioner to administer chapter.

A. The Commissioner, with the advice and guidance of the Council, shall be responsible for administering the provisions of this chapter.

B. The Commissioner shall:

1. Approve, if approval is in the best interests of the apprentice, any apprenticeship agreement that meets the standards established under this chapter;

2. Terminate or cancel any apprenticeship agreement in accordance with the provisions of such agreement;

3. Keep a record of apprenticeship agreements and their disposition;

4. Issue certificates of completion upon the completion of the apprenticeship;

5. Initiate deregistration proceedings when an apprenticeship program is not conducted, operated, and administered in accordance with the registered provisions, except that deregistration proceedings for violation of equal opportunity requirements shall be processed in accordance with the provisions of the Virginia State Plan for Equal Employment Opportunity in Apprenticeship;

6. Establish policies governing the provision of apprenticeship-related instruction delivered by state and local public education agencies and shall provide for the administration and supervision of related and supplemental instruction for apprentices; and

7. Perform such other duties as are necessary to carry out the intent of this chapter.

Code 1950, § 40-131; 1970, c. 321; 2014, c. 734; 2015, cc. 63, 86.

§ 40.1-126. Operation and application of chapter.

Nothing in this chapter or in any apprentice agreement approved under this chapter shall invalidate any apprenticeship provision in any collective agreement between employers and employees establishing higher apprenticeship standards regarding ratios of apprentices to journeymen, probationary periods, or length of the program. But none of the terms or provisions of this chapter shall apply to any person, firm, corporation, or craft unless, until and only so long as such person, firm, corporation, or craft voluntarily elects that the terms and provisions of this chapter shall apply.

Code 1950, § 40-132; 1970, c. 321; 1990, c. 614.

§ 40.1-127. Reserved.

Reserved.