World Day Against Child Labour - 12 June 2020
- Advancing the legal commitment to child labour elimination and the central role of social dialogue.
- Promoting decent work for adults and youth of legal working age, especially through addressing informality.
- Building and extending social protection systems, including floors, to mitigate the economic vulnerability of households.
- Expanding access to free, quality public education as the logical alternative to child labour.
- Addressing child labour in supply chains.
- Protecting children in situations of fragility and crisis.
According to the latest ILO's 2017 Global Estimates, 152 million children are in child labour. While this is 100 million less than in 2000, 73 million are still in hazardous work, little or no progress has been made over the last five years among the youngest age group (5-11 years old) and the percentage of those in in child labour in agriculture actually increased (from 59 to 71 per cent). With an increase in demographic projections for most affected regions and the spread of conflict and humanitarian situations, we cannot take further progress for granted and efforts need to be intensified to provide children with a better future. The next Global Estimates of Child Labour and the corresponding Global Report, both planned for 2021, will provide guidance on the way ahead.
The International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour 2021, adopted by the UN General Assembly, the V Global Conference on the Sustained Elimination of Child Labour (also planned for 2021), and the SDG Decade for Action, recently launched by the UN Secretary-General, provide excellent opportunities to join forces, align agendas, mobilize political will and resources to end child labour once and for all by 2025.
With the slogan “PickUPthePace! Together we can end child labour,” the ILO aims to draw the attention of policy makers and societies to the power of joint action and provide them with experience and success stories to inspire further efforts to address the challenge and to put the right policies into place, backed up by sufficient resources.
World Day 2020 calls upon governments, employers’ and workers’ organizations, together with civil society, other UN agencies, the media, regional, national and local partners, to prepare for the International Year, to define their actions on the road to 2025, and to accelerate the pace on their commitments. These could include the full implementation of laws, policies and action plans on child labour and honouring the pledges made at the IV Global Conference on the Sustained Eradication of Child Labour in Argentina in 2017.
This World Day also highlights the importance of enhanced international cooperation and assistance in tackling child labour, as emphasized in the SDGs and in the ILO’s Worst Forms of Child labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182). This Convention has now been almost universally ratified. The ILO’s Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138), with 172 ratifications, is not far behind.
Through the ILO’s IPEC+ Flagship Programme, the ILO has developed a vast set of policy recommendations and practical toolkits to effectively address child labour. These responses, outlined in the policy report on ending child labour by 2025, include:
The vehicles for enhanced action and collaboration are there. Alliance 8.7 brings together over 250 global, regional and national partners to collaborate, share knowledge, innovate and drive progress. At the national level, 20 Pathfinder Countries have committed to accelerate action, to look for innovative solutions and to share best practice with all partners, to meet SDG Target 8.7’s urgent deadlines. At regional level, the Regional Initiative, Latin America and the Caribbean Free of Child Labour is driving progress; the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the South Asia Initiative to End Violence Against Children (SAIEVAC) are implementing enhanced policies and action to eradicate child labour.
COVID-19 and Child Labour: Looking forward in times of crisis
Join us for a high-level debate on the occasion of the World Day Against Child Labour.
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