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Review of Child Labour Laws of Barbados

Therefore, a child from age 14 years may be allowed to work in a non-industrial undertaking from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. during the school term and on non-school days from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The law does not expressly restrict such work for children to what is stipulated as light work in the Convention. The law merely prohibits any work in industrial undertakings and ships as well as hazardous work for children.

It is recommended that the Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act be amended to make provision for children to be engaged in light work in certain restricted undertakings to be determined by the competent authority after consultations with the representative organizations of employers and workers. The current coverage of all sectors other than the industrial sector is too broad and not consistent with the objectives of ILO Convention No. 138.

Barbados may wish to consider the good practice of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, which restricts light work to only four activities for a limited duration of five years.

Barbados may also consider the adoption of a legal provision, similar to the Bahamas, on the prohibition of employment during school hours. The Barbados law limits the prohibition of employment to children and young persons of compulsory school age during school hours. The Bahamas law is applicable to all children and young person attending school regardless of whether they are of compulsory school age. It should be noted here that there are students in the Barbados secondary school system who are over the compulsory school age and therefore outside of the protection of the Employment (Miscellaneous Provision) Act. Such children require protection to ensure that their educational development is not harmed by work.

4.2.3 Artistic Performances

There is no legislative provision or policy in Barbados regarding the engagement of children in artistic performances. There are instances of artistic performances by children under 16 years in Barbados. The issue to be decided is whether those instances of artistic performances can be characterized as child labour. These performances are mainly talent shows and cultural performances at Crop Over and Independence Festivals. The performances are not paid performances and in the main do not offend child labour Conventions.

With respect to artistic performances which may be considered child labour, there should be an amendment to the Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Amendment Act to allow for the person seeking to engage the services of the child performer to obtain a permit from the Chief Labour Officer, who shall be required to consult with the BEC and CTUSAB, and impose such conditions to ensure that the welfare of the child is guaranteed.

The Government of Barbados may wish to consider adopting laws similar to those of the Bahamas on artistic performances of children under 16 years. In the Bahamas no child


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