Murt Asks Attorney General to Examine Work Permits Issued for Children in ‘Kate Plus 8’ Production

Rep. Thomas P. Murt (R-Montgomery/Philadelphia) has asked Attorney General Tom Corbett to examine the special permits issued for six children under the age of 7 involved in the television production “Kate Plus 8” to determine if the permits comply with Pennsylvania’s child labor law. 


In his letter to Corbett, Murt noted Pennsylvania’s Child Labor Law authorizes the Department of Labor and Industry to issue special permits for the employment of minors between 7 and 18 years of age in theatrical productions, musical recitals or concerts, entertainment acts, modeling, radio, television, motion picture making, or in other similar forms or media.  The law also authorizes the department to issue special permits for the temporary employment of minors as part of the performing cast in the production of a motion picture, but it does not specifically mention television productions.


“As I read the law, permits for children under age 7 are available for performing in a movie, but permits are not available for children under age 7 to participate in a television show,” Murt said.  “I have asked the attorney general to examine the law and clarify whether the permit process provides for such performances.”


Murt added that although the law does not appear to allow for special permits for children under age 7 to appear in television productions, the Department of Labor and Industry has issued special permits for six children under age 7 involved in the production “Kate Plus 8.” 


“It appears those permits were granted even though the law does not provide for them,” Murt said. “Under the Commonwealth Attorneys Act, the attorney general is authorized to furnish legal advice to agency heads concerning the interpretation of state laws and regulations.  I have asked him to look into this case to determine whether these permits are legal.”


Murt also sent a letter to Labor and Industry Secretary Sandi Vito asking her to seek the attorney general’s guidance on the issue.


“We can all agree that as the number of film and television productions in Pennsylvania increases, the protection of children involved in those productions should be of paramount importance,” Murt said.  “If there is a desire to create a permit process for younger children to participate in television shows in Pennsylvania, I would be interested in working with the department and all interested parties to discuss how we can amend the law.”


Rep. Thomas P. Murt
152nd District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
(215) 674-3755
(717) 787-6886

Contact:  Sean Yeakle
(717) 787-3406

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