Employment Standards Extended To Children Who Work In Live Entertainment

Children who work in live entertainment are now protected by employment standards legislation in BC. The changes, which took effect July 1, set conditions of employment for children aged 4-14 who perform and rehearse in theatre, dance, music, opera or circus events.

“The Employment Standards Act has covered conditions of employment for kids working in film and television for several years, but there were no standards in place for the performing arts,” says Actsafe’s general manager Dawn Brennan. “It’s taken a long time to get this in place, and many organizations were involved in our consultation process.”

Actsafe facilitated development of the standards through a consultation process that began in 2006 and brought together unions, associations and employers to develop industry recommendations.

Actors employed under a union contract will not be affected by the changes, as B.C. labour law stipulates that a union contract supersedes the Employment Standards Act. The legislation does not affect young actors performing in productions on a voluntary basis or as part of school programs and productions.

Similar to legislation requirements in the recorded entertainment industry, the new provisions specify income protection requirements for young workers. In the live entertainment industry, employers are now required to submit 25 per cent of a child’s income in excess of $1,000 per week to the Public Guardian and Trustee.

Specific information on this requirement is available in on the Public Guardian and Trustee Factsheet or on their website.

For more information contact Dawn Brennan at 604.733.4682


Actsafe is a leader in promoting workplace health and safety in BC’s performing arts and motion picture industries.

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