Shirley Douglas, Officer of the Order of Canada, and a long-time protector of child actors in the entertainment industry, will be on hand at the Ontario Legislature today with child actors, parents and other supporters of Bill 71 – Protecting Child Performers Act. ACTRA Toronto and Canadian Actors’ Equity Association, representing screen and stage actors, jointly support the bill. The private members bill will be presented at second reading today in the Ontario Legislature by Paul Miller, MPP for Hamilton East-Stoney Creek.
“Children are working this very moment on non-union stages and in non-union commercials, film, TV and web,” said Shirley Douglas. “They rely on the wisdom of this legislature to shepherd this bill through to law.”
“This proposed legislation is something I’m surprised isn’t already law,” said Shannon Kook-Chun (‘Zane’ from Degrassi: The Next Generation). Added Amariah Faulkner (‘Gretl’ in Mirvish Productions’ The Sound of Music), “For the sake of all child actors like me, I sure hope the government makes the right choice.”
If passed, the bill will go to committee.
ACTRA Toronto is the largest organization within ACTRA, representing over 15,000 of Canada’s 22,000 professional performers working in the English-language recorded media in Canada. As an advocate for Canadian culture since 1943, ACTRA is a member-driven union that continues to secure rights and respect for the work of professional performers.
Equity is the voice of professional artists working in live performance in English Canada. It is a national artists’ association representing almost 6,000 performers, directors, choreographers, fight directors and stage managers working in theatre, opera and dance from coast to coast.