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Hamilton’s Musician Fair Payment Policy wins Music Cities Award

HAMILTON, ON – The City has won a 2021 Music Cities Award in the category of “Best Initiative to Directly Support Musicians” for Hamilton’s Musician Fair Payment Policy. The awards were presented virtually on Tuesday, November 9, 2021.

The Music Cities Awards is a global competition designed to acknowledge and reward the most outstanding applications of music for economic, social, environmental, and cultural development all around the world. The awards also aim to promote best practices and demonstrate the value of music to the world.

The City of Hamilton’s Musicians Fair Payment Policy supports and increases community awareness of the importance of paying musicians fairly for their music performances. The policy ensures that musicians hired for city-led events are paid, at minimum, the current minimum annual rates established by the Canadian Federation of Musicians who are represented locally by the Hamilton Musicians Guild.

Quick facts

  • The City of Hamilton’s Musicians Fair Payment Policy defines "City-led events" as those that are led and organized by City staff; events directed by Council or under the guidance of boards or committees; and/or when the City contracts a third party to oversee an event.
  • The policy was approved by city council on June 23, 2021. In addition to the policy, the City of Hamilton directly supports musicians through initiatives such as the annual Musician Conference, Musician Development Program, Music Monday’s series, and others.
  • The policy was created in response to advice and support from the local Music Industry – specifically the City’s Hamilton Music Advisory Team (HMAT) and the minimums are based on the fees recommended by the Canadian Federation of Musicians, represented locally by the Hamilton Musicians Guild Local 293 who are part of HMAT. 
  • The City’s Economic Development Action Plan recognizes the importance of the creative industries to Hamilton’s economy.  The Musicians Fair Payment Policy furthers the Action Plan’s priories of “Facilitating a Skilled and Adaptable Workforce and Growing Business and Investments”.

“I am proud of this global recognition for our Musicians Fair Payment Policy and to our staff who helped develop and implement the policy. This award demonstrates how important this policy is for musicians and how the City of Hamilton is committed to continually supporting our musicians.” - Mayor Fred Eisenberger

“Congratulations to our Tourism and Culture staff on receiving this prestigious Music Cities Award. I am deeply thankful to city staff, the Hamilton Musician’s Guild, and the volunteers with the Hamilton Music Advisory Team for their dedication and work on the Musician’s Fair Payment Policy. Hamilton is now a global leader on setting the standard to fairly compensate artists for their work.” - Jason Thorne, General Manager, Planning and Economic Development

"This is an exciting milestone for the City as this recognition of our Musicians Fair Payment Policy will hopefully push other organizations to follow the city’s lead in recognizing the value musicians add to our community.” - Carrie Brooks-Joiner, Director of Tourism and Culture

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