Clowns, magicians will need licences in Brampton, Ont.
The City of Brampton is bringing in a new licensing bylaw that applies to all children’s entertainers, including clowns, magicians and shopping-mall Santas.
The goal is to ensure that the people working with children have had a background check.
Gael Miles, a regional councillor, said the move toward a bylaw has been in the works for more than a year.
"I think it was one of our residents actually that came to council about a year and a half ago with a very compelling argument that we needed to licence individuals that worked with children," she told CBC News in an interview on Wednesday.
Given that city employees who have dealings with children are already required to have record checks, Miles said the same standard should apply to private entertainers.
"The fact that entertainers who are actually working with the children in our community are not required to have a criminal record check just does not make any sense," Miles said.
The city said there is currently "no precedent for this type of licensing by other municipalities anywhere in Canada," but it believes that other municipalities will follow its lead.
No timeline has been given as to when the new bylaw will come into effect.
With a report from the CBC's Peter Akman