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World Day Against Child Labor It is commemorated every year on June 12. Despite the actions of international organizations to prevent the labor of minors, millions of boys and girls around the world today suffer from labor exploitation.
With jobs inappropriate for their age, strenuous hours and under deplorable conditions, these minors see their childhood shattered and the illusions and happiness they need to continue growing are shattered. The International Labor Organization (ILO) has found that tens of millions of children work on plantations around the world, but other activities such as domestic service, textile workshops, food stalls or prostitution are also fueled by innocent workforce.
The Asia-Pacific region, which includes three of the world's most populous countries, China, India and Indonesia, has the highest level of child laborers in the world. About 122 million minors between the ages of 5 and 14 are part of the legion of child laborers in Asia-Pacific, according to the ILO, a body that also estimates that half of exploited children perform jobs considered dangerous.
International society Amicus the Union, committed to promoting good working conditions, has denounced that "still 64 percent of working children are from the Asia-Pacific region." Most of the exploited children in Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries reside in rural areas and work in agriculture and livestock. There is a small percentage in industries and fishing.
In India, there are some 12.6 million children caught in child trafficking networks (more than 1 percent of the population), according to government data, although the Save the Childhood Foundation raises this number to 60 million. These children are forced to work in agriculture or in the domestic sphere and many of them are involved in the prostitution business.
The ILO Conventions seek to protect children from exposure to child labor. These Conventions, together with other international instruments relating to the rights of the child, workers and human rights, provide an important framework for legislation established by governments. However, the most recent global estimates from the ILO indicate that there are 215 million child victims of child labor.
By entering the labor market prematurely, children are deprived of the education and training necessary for them, their families and their communities to emerge from the cycle of poverty in which they find themselves. Children who are victims of the worst forms of child labor are exposed to physical, psychological or moral abuse that can cause them harm for the rest of their lives.
Regarding child labor, the ILO Convention No. 138 on the minimum age for admission to employment, 1973, it requires member states to establish in their legislation a legal minimum age for admission to employment, which must not be less than the age at which compulsory education ceases, and in any case, 15 years. A Member State whose economy and means of education are insufficiently developed may, under certain conditions, initially specify a minimum age of 14 years..
The ILO Convention No. 182 on the worst forms of child labor, 1999, calls for the adoption of "immediate and effective measures to achieve the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labor as a matter of urgency." The worst forms include:
- All forms of slavery or practices similar to slavery, such as the sale and trafficking of children, debt bondage and serfdom, and forced or compulsory labor, including the forced or compulsory recruitment of children for use in armed conflicts.
- The use, procuring or offering of children for prostitution, the production of pornography or pornographic performances.
- The use, procuring or offering of children for illicit activities, in particular the production and trafficking of narcotic drugs, as defined in the relevant international treaties.
- Work that, by its nature or the conditions in which it is carried out, is likely to harm the health, safety or morals of children. This type of work must be determined by the national authorities.
ILO (International Labor Organization)
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