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Children's employment

Important COVID-19 information for employers of children

The Office of the Children's Guardian has considered the implications of COVID-19 when employing children in the entertainment, exhibition and modelling industries.

Babies under 12 weeks

Employers seeking approval to employ children under 12 weeks of age are required to demonstrate that they have exceptional circumstances that specifically require the employment of an infant. 

If you feel that you have exceptional circumstances, you will need to

In your variation request you must demonstrate; 

  • the presence of a baby under 12 weeks is essential to the plot / story / image
  • there is no possibility of using a substitute such as a baby over 12 weeks
  • you have comprehensive policies and procedures that show how you will manage COVID transmission risks in the general workplace.
  • you have a specific COVID management plan for mum and baby for the entire time they will be on set.

Children under 3 years

Please follow the requirements of the children's employment legislation when employing children between 12 weeks and three years:

  • make sure a registered nurse or midwife is present at all times
  • follow the advice of the nurse regarding the working environment and care of the child

Compliance monitoring employment of children during COVID-19

Employers are expected to provide a safe workplace for children and follow the requirements of the children's employment legislation. Audits of children's employment notifications will be undertaken remotely.

A children's employment officer may contact you to request records relating to a child's recent employment, including:

  • children's start, finish and break times
  • names of supervisors and parent nominee forms
  • children's roles and actions
  • risk assessments

Records can be requested under clause 3 (4) of the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) (Child Employment) Regulation 2015

The children's employment team is not able to answer phone enquiries during COVID-19 restrictions. Please email us at kidsemployment@kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au or leave a message at (02) 8219 3797. We will get back to you as soon as possible.

Children's employment

We help protect the safety, health and wellbeing of children while they are employed in the entertainment industry. We administer the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) (Child Employment) Regulation 2015 and the Code of Practice.

The Regulation applies when you employ children:

  • under 15 years of age in the entertainment and exhibition, still photography and door-to-door sales industries
  • under 16 years of age for any type of modelling
  • who are being paid either in money or material benefit

It also applies to children who are not being paid when there is a mix of paid and unpaid children engaged.

What do employers need to do?

Apply for an authority to employ children

You are required to hold an authority if you direct a child to perform tasks for payment or material benefit or you are an industry student who directs children in paid or unpaid activities.  Apply for an authority

Notify child employment, 7 days in advance

At least seven days before a child is involved in your production, you will need to tell us how you will be employing the child and how you will keep them safe.  Send your online notification form

Submit a child details form

At least 48 hours before children are employed, email your completed child details form to kidsemployment@kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au  Complete your child details form(XLSX 52KB) 

Comply with the Code of Practice

Employers of children are required to comply with the Code of Practice under the children's employment legislation.  Download the Code of Practice and Regulation

The Quick Guide to Employing Children contains a step by step guide for employers to follow.

Contact us

Phone: 02 8219 3797
Fax: 02 8219 3699
Email: kidsemployment@kidsguardian.nsw.gov.au 

Check whether an organisation or individual has an authority