Today's Law As Amended

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AB-2539 Modeling agencies: licensure: models: employees.(2015-2016)

As Amends the Law Today


 Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 1707) is added to Part 6 of Division 2 of the Labor Code, to read:

CHAPTER  6. Modeling Agencies
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Professional fashion models face pervasive and hazardous occupational demands to maintain extreme and unhealthy thinness. These occupational pressures create a dangerous work environment. Models experience a substantially elevated risk of eating disorders and other severe health problems associated with starvation.
(b) The majority of models enter the industry as minors, making them especially vulnerable to mistreatment and to the physical and psychological damage caused by eating disorders. Women working as professional fashion models are more likely to have a diagnosis of anorexia nervosa, dangerously low body mass index, and amenorrhea, which is a serious medical indicator of hormonal dysregulation that can have negative health consequences for life.
(c) As with all workers, professional fashion models are entitled to safe working conditions. The time, place, and means of the services provided by professional models are typically controlled by the company paying their compensation. Many models, including minors, are wrongly treated as independent contractors and currently do not receive workplace protections. Clarifying their classification as employees of the companies paying their compensation will enhance workplace protections.
(d) The impact of the fashion industry on health reaches far beyond the hazardous occupational conditions that professional models endure. Through its dominant presence in the mass media and pervasive influence on setting cultural standards for apparel, particularly for girls and young women, the fashion industry helps to define, transmit, and reinforce an unrealistic standard of thinness, a well-documented risk factor for eating disorders.
(e) Scientific research has shown that viewing media images of extremely thin models leads to body dissatisfaction in adolescent girls and young women, especially those who already have heightened vulnerability to eating disorders. In addition, scientific studies have shown that body dissatisfaction in adolescence is a strong indicator that a young person may develop an eating disorder.
(f) Improving working conditions to reduce excessive thinness among professional models is likely to lead to healthier images of models’ weight. This change in media portrayals of models’ weight may help to achieve a larger societal value in making media images more healthful and less damaging to girls’ and young women’s body image, ultimately reducing their risk for eating disorders.
 For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
(a) “License” means a license issued by the Labor Commissioner as a talent agency to carry on the business of a modeling agency under Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1700).
(b) “Licensee” means a modeling agency that holds a valid license as a talent agency under Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1700).
(c) “Model” means an artist under Section 1701 covered under Wage Order 4 of the Industrial Welfare Commission who, in the course of his or her occupation, performs modeling services for, or who consents in writing to the transfer of his or her legal right to the use of his or her name, portrait, picture, or image for advertising purposes or for the purposes of trade directly to, a retail store, a manufacturer, an advertising agency, a photographer, a publishing company, or a modeling agency.
(d) “Modeling agency” means a person that facilitates an employment opportunity as defined in Section 1701 for a model and that holds a valid license under Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1700).
(e) “Modeling services” means the appearance by a model in photographic sessions or the engagement of a model in runway, live, filmed, or taped performances requiring him or her to pose, provide an example or standard of artistic expression, or to be a representation to show the construction or appearance of some thing or place for purposes of display or advertising.
 A model shall be classified as an employee of the person for whom the model’s services are directly provided.
 A person shall not engage in or carry on the occupation of a modeling agency without first procuring a license under Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1700).
 This chapter shall not apply to persons covered by Wage Order 11, regulating the Broadcasting Industry, or Wage Order 12, regulating the Motion Picture Industry, of the Industrial Welfare Commission.
 (a) The Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board shall, no later than December 1, 2017, and in consultation with accredited specialists in the prevention and treatment of eating disorders, adopt an occupational safety and health standard for models, with an operative date of September 1, 2018, to be fully complied with by December 31, 2018 . The standard shall apply to services provided in California by models under this chapter and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1700). The Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board may update these standards from time to time as it deems necessary.
(b) The standard shall address issues including, but not limited to, all of the following:
(1) Protection of the model’s rights to health care privacy under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-191) and all other provisions of law.
(2) Workplace safety, especially for minors, including protection from sexual exploitation and sexual predators.
(3) Prevention and treatment of eating disorders.