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NYS Comptroller


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Department of Labor
Protection of Child Performers (Follow-Up)

Issued: December 11, 2018
Link to full audit report 2018-F-24
Link to 90-day response

To determine the extent of implementation of the two recommendations included in our initial audit report, Protection of Child Performers (2016-S-70).

The Department of Labor (Department) is charged with protecting workers in New York State. Within the Department, the Child Performers Unit (Unit) is responsible for monitoring compliance with Part 186 of the New York Codes, Rules and Regulations and Article 4-A of the State Labor Laws, which were established to protect child performers whose interests and well-being during employment may be vulnerable to exploitation. The Unit facilitates compliance through the use of an electronic permit application system (System) and comprehensive permit requirements for child performers and certification of employers. System records indicate that, from July 2017 through September 2018, the Department issued about 19,000 total annual renewal, new annual, and temporary child performer permits as well as approximately 400 employer certificates.

Our initial audit examined whether the Department adequately ensured that parents/guardians and employers complied with the legal requirements that help protect the welfare of child performers. We found that the Department had not created a sound and effective system of internal controls for the Unit, and did not have the necessary controls to monitor and enforce compliance with regulations designed to protect child performers’ earnings. We also found that the System had significant data entry, maintenance, and functionality deficiencies that limited its effectiveness and reliability as a monitoring tool. Additionally, the Department did not properly use data analysis or System data reports to identify and correct potential System flaws.

Key Finding
Department officials have not made progress in addressing the issues identified in our initial report. The Department has not implemented either of the two recommendations in our initial report.

Key Recommendation
Officials are given 30 days after the issuance of the follow-up review to provide information on any actions that are planned to address the unresolved issues discussed in this review.

Other Related Audit/Report of Interest
Department of Labor: Protection of Child Performers (2016-S-70)

State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director: Brian Reilly
Phone: (518) 474-3271; Email:
Address: Office of the State Comptroller; Division of State Government Accountability; 110 State Street, 11th Floor; Albany, NY 12236