At Sitters4U we often assist film studios and casting agencies with childminding services on film sets. It’s a fantastic experience for the children performing and an experience in and unto itself for the childminder, but what do we need to be aware of when minding kids on set? Often the rest of the film crew are running around, they are busy, they lose track of essentials, like time. When booked as a childminder, its your job to look after and care for the well being of the child or children assigned to your care. What does this really mean though?
You need to be aware of, and where necessary intervene in order to ensure that the those on set respect the legal regulations regarding working hours for children in the performing arts sector. What are these limitations?
Glad you asked. Here’s the low down as provided by the department of labour;
Maximum Actual Working Time
- Children aged 11 years or older may work for a maximum of 4 hours per day.
- Children aged 10 years old or younger may work for a maximum of 3 hours per day.
Maximum Time Allowed to be Spent at a Place of Work
- Children under the age of 5 years old may not be present at a workplace for longer than 6 hours.
- Children aged of 5 to 10 years old may not be present at a workplace for longer than 8 hours.
- Children over the age of 10 years old may not be present at a workplace for longer than 10 hours.
When to Take a Break
- Children must be given a minimum of a 30 minute resting period after 2 hours of work if aged 10 years old or older
- Children must be given a minimum of a 30 minute resting period after 1 ½ hours of work if aged 10 years old or younger.
What About Meals?
While the BCEA makes no meal allowances for adults, when it comes to children, it’s an entirely different kettle of potatoes,
- Employers must provide children with nutritious food and drinks appropriate to the age of the child at all times in an area separate from the adults, where only the parent, legal guardian or child minder is allowed.
Night Time Blues
There are a number of important permissions and limitations to be aware of when caring for a child on set at night between the witching hours of 10pm and 5am.
- Parents or legal guardians need to give express permission for this to happen.
- The employer needs to provide written reasons for the work to be performed at night.
- The parents or legal guardian need to agree to an allowance upfront.
- The parents or legal guardian may also request that the child undergoes a medical examination, at the expense of the employer.
Next week we explore legal requirements regarding film set safety. Stay tuned and subscribe to receive our latest articles or join our Facebook group.
Written By: Bianca Steyn
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