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In conflicts and disasters, protect children from child labour

12 June 2017


Globally over 1.5 billion people live in countries that are affected by conflict, violence and fragility. At the same time, around 200 million people are affected by disasters every year. A third of them are children. A significant proportion of the 168 million children engaged in child labour live in areas affected by conflict and disaster. The World Day Against Child Labour this year will focus on the impact of conflicts and disasters on child labour.

Conflicts and disasters have a devastating impact on people’s lives. They kill, maim, injure, force people to flee their homes, destroy livelihoods, push people into poverty and starvation and trap people in situations where their basic human rights are violated. Children are often the first to suffer as schools are destroyed and basic services are disrupted. Many children are internally displaced or become refugees in other countries, and are particularly vulnerable to trafficking and child labour. Ultimately, millions of children are pushed into child labour by conflicts and disasters.

As the world strives to achieve the elimination of child labour by 2025, on this World Day Against Child Labour, let’s join forces to end child labour in areas affected by conflict and disaster!

Key resources

  1. Child Labour in Emergencies: Introducing the New Interagency Toolkit

    The Toolkit, produced by the Child Labour Task Force, co-chaired by Plan International and the ILO.

  2. Guiding principles on the access of refugees and other forcibly displaced persons to the labour market

    The Governing Body of the ILO, meeting at its 328th Session (Geneva, 26 October 9 November 2016) authorized the Director-General to publish and disseminate this Guiding principles adopted by the Tripartite Technical Meeting on the Access of Refugees and other Forcibly Displaced Persons to the Labour Market (Geneva, 5-7 July 2016).

  3. Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action

    In 2010, the members of the global Child Protection Working Group agreed on the need for child protection standards in humanitarian settings. The Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action (CPMS) were finalized in September 2012. Over 400 individuals from 30 agencies in over 40 countries, including child protection practitioners, humanitarian actors from other sectors, academics and policy makers, were involved in their development.

  1. Children formerly associated with armed forces and groups: “How-to” guide on economic reintegration

    This Guide provides operational and detailed guidance to design and implement the economic component of reintegration programmes for children formerly associated with armed forces and groups and other conflict-affected children.

  2. SCREAM: A special module on child labour and armed conflict

    This SCREAM Special Module will contribute to sensitizing young people around the world about child labour and armed conflict and, in particular, the use of children by armed forces and groups, one of the gravest violations of children’s rights.

Other resources from Partners

  1. OSCE: 17th Alliance against Trafficking in Persons Conference

    Trafficking in Children and the Best Interests of the Child

    On 3-4 April 2017, the OSCE Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings hosted the 17th Alliance Against Trafficking in Persons. The two-day conference, "Trafficking in Children and the Best Interests of the Child", aims to enhance the coherence of international efforts and further promote integrated approaches to respond to child trafficking in the OSCE region exclusively in the best interests of the child.

Children stories