" /> Child Labour in Agriculture: June 2009 Archives

« June 2008 | Main | February 2010 »

June 23, 2009

WDACL 2009. THE GLOBAL FINANCIAL CRISES COULD PUSH MORE CHILDREN AT RISK OF BECOMING CHILD LABOURERS

This year, has been celebrated the tenth anniversary of the ILO convention Nr. 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labour, a convention that has been rapidly ratified by most countries. WDACL 2009 is focused on girls child labourers as ILO says that the global financial crisis could push more children, in particulate girls to become child labour. The ILO report Give girls a chance - tackling child labour, a key to the futures says that around 100 million girls are involved in child labour worldwide.

Girls have less opportunity to access education then boys. Parents, who are pushed into poverty and could not afford to send all kids to school, then the daughters, are those who lose out. According to the global literacy statistics, two out of three persons who are unable to read and write are women. During the financial crisis, the government make budget cuts, and cutting the education budget could lead to children dropping out of school.

Girls work is often hidden from the outside world as they work in home-based workshops, small-scale farmers, domestic work or are trafficked for prostitution. They are often subjected to brutal treatment and sexual abuse. Usually, daughters have more duties in their own household then the sons do. About two thirds of girls aged 5-14 work in agriculture and about 20 million are employed in manufacturing producing footballs, hand-rolled cigarettes, toys, garments, etc. ILO estimates at leas 1.8 million children worldwide are exploited in pornography and commercial sex.

HIV/AIDS epidemic leave many children without parents who have to enter the labour market prematurely. UNAIDS estimates that 12 million children under 18 years old lost one or both parents in sub-Saharan Africa.

On June 12, “Haba na Haba” Band of young musicians from Kenya, who developed their musical skills within the ILO-IPEC Programme, opened the special Session of the ILC that has marked the WDACL and the tenths anniversary of the ILO Convention No. 182.

haba_band.JPG

WDACL in Geneva. Global March Against Child Labour

IUF has marched with former bonded and child labourers, representatives of unions, NGOs and ILO officers on June 12 in Geneva to stop child labour, an event organised by Global March Against Child Labour. The messages the Global March participants wanted the World to hear were:

Stop, stop Child Labour!

We want education!

No more tools in tiny hands - we want books, we want toys!

Go, go – Global March!

The march has started from ILO’s Global March against Child Labour sculpture and marched down to the Place des Nations, where the march participants have been welcomed by children from Geneva local schools.

WDACL_09.JPG

WDACL_C.JPG

global_march.JPG

L_S_S.JPG

J_S_P.JPG

June 19, 2009

GENEVA. FORCED LABOUR AND CHILD LABOUR IN CENTRAL ASIA

On June 11, in Geneva, was organised a round table on forced and child labour in Central Asia, which highlighted the exploitation of children in cotton growing. Representatives of trade unions, ILO/IPEC, NGOs and companies took part in the roundtable. The IUF with ITGLWF and EI have been among the speakers.

View photo

IUF affiliates in Central Asia region are calling on global action on elimination of all child labour in cotton growing. IUF welcomes retailers’ interest in ending forced child labor and we think they have to have a wider commitment to assist in improving conditions generally in agricultural supply chains. There is decent work deficit in agriculture, bad OHS and low wages that make many adult workers move to work to urban areas or migrate to other countries for better payment and are replaced by children in the fields.
Therefore, our actions should not be driven by cotton retailers interested at worst in protecting their image or at best only in cleaning THEIR supply chains. Our priority is what is best for the children and what will ensure not just quick-fix solutions in cotton but what will ensure long-term, sustainable action to eliminate child labour in Central Asia and in other parts of the world.
Retailers need a long-term commitment to clean their supply chains.

But, we recognise special measures should be taken in Uzbekistan in regard to government mobilisation of children for cotton picking.

IUF supports the call of the Workers Group spokesperson in the ILO debate on the forced labour report that the Government should follow the example of the Government of Brazil and acknowledge the existence of forced labour thus opening the door for supportive action by the international community. One solution would be the replacement of forced child labour by unemployed adults who receive fair wages and have decent working conditions.
Forced labour is unacceptable!

The full text of IUF EECA representative presentation is available here