ILO – BPS to release national data on working children in Indonesia

The labour market in Indonesia is characterized by the existence of working children; however, to date there has been no collection of comprehensive data about the work characteristics of children aged 5 – 17 years. To fulfill the urgent need for an accurate estimate of working children data and information on their socio-economic characteristics, the International Labour Organization (ILO) in collaboration with Badan Pusat Statistik (Statistics Indonesia) will launch and release the report titled “Working Children in Indonesia 2009” which contains findings from the first Indonesia child labour survey (ICLS) on Thursday, 11 February 2010, at Borobudur Hotel, Jakarta.

Press release | 09 February 2010

JAKARTA (Joint press release): The labour market in Indonesia is characterized by the existence of working children; however, to date there has been no collection of comprehensive data about the work characteristics of children aged 5 – 17 years. To fulfill the urgent need for an accurate estimate of working children data and information on their socio-economic characteristics, the International Labour Organization (ILO) in collaboration with Badan Pusat Statistik (Statistics Indonesia) will launch and release the report titled “Working Children in Indonesia 2009” which contains findings from the first Indonesia child labour survey (ICLS) on Thursday, 11 February 2010, at Borobudur Hotel, Jakarta.

The first of its kind, the ICLS is a sub-sample and integrated in the 2009 National Labour Force Survey (Sakernas). Derived from the results of the listing of 2008, from 248 selected districts, 760 census blocks were selected using the same sampling technique. The questionnaire, manuals and basic concepts that were used in this survey were adopted from those recommended by the ILO’s International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour (ILO-IPEC). The term ‘child labour’ used in the survey includes all working children aged 5 – 12 years regardless of their working hours, working children aged 13 – 14 years who had worked more than 15 hours per week and working children aged 15 – 17 years who had worked more than 40 hours per week.

Chief Statistician of BPS, Rusman Heriawan, explained that the ICLS does not only provide the number of working children, but also other invaluable data on the children group (5-17 years old), such as the number of working children who can be categorized as child labour, number of children aged 5-17 years old who may be considered as idle (neither schooling nor working) and socio-economic characteristics of working children and their parents.

“This kind of data cannot be provided by other surveys, including Sakernas and is too valuable to be ignored by data users. I hope the data would be used by all relevant stakeholders in designing programmes to provide better protection to the rights and well-being of children, specifically in relation to the efforts to eliminate child labour. Through this survey and the data generated on working children and child labour, BPS is also proud to be involved in the elimination of child labour in Indonesia.”

Meanwhile, commenting on the survey, ILO Jakarta Officer-in-charge Peter van Rooij said that “This survey is powerful evidence of the need to have accurate data regarding working children. It plays an important role in fulfilling the lack of reliable data and void in knowledge on child labour in Indonesia.”

He also emphasized that the main findings of the survey have provided clear evidence that there is a large pool of working children, many of whom are undereducated and unskilled. “By having accurate statistics, relevant parties are able to develop appropriate programmes and activities to tackle child labour problems. This would not only help the children concerned, but would be an effective investment in the future of Indonesia’s economy.”

The major findings of the ICLS are as follows:

1. Out of the total number of children aged 5-17, about 58.8 million, 4.05 million or 6.9 percent were considered as working children. Out of the total working children, 1.76 million or 43.3 percent were child labour.

2. Out of the total number of children aged 5-17, 48.1 million or 81.8 percent were attending school, 24.3 million or 41.2 percent were involved in housekeeping, and 6.7 million or 11.4 percent of the children were considered as ‘idle’, that is, neither schooling, nor housekeeping, nor working.

3. About 50 percent of working children worked at least 21 hours per week and 25 percent at least 12 hours per week. On average, working children worked 25.7 hours per week, while those categorized as child labour worked 35.1 hour per week. Some 20.7 percent of working children worked in hazardous situation, i.e. more than 40 hours per week.

4. Working children were mostly still in school, working as unpaid family workers, and involved in agricultural, services and manufacturing-related works.

5. The numbers and the characteristics of working children and child labour were different between sex and age groups.

The ILO-IPEC project in Indonesia has been actively combating child labour in the country, in particular its worst forms, since 1992 through a series of action programmes in close collaboration with the Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration, other relevant Government agencies, unions, employers, academia, non governmental organizations, mass media and community groups.

For further information please contact:

Ms Arum Ratnawati
Chief Technical Adviser of the ILO’s Child Labour Programme
Tel. +6221 3913112 ext. 122
Email

Mr Abdul Hakim
Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist of the ILO’s Child Labour Programme
Tel. +6221 3913112 ext. 127
Mobile: +62812 933 8959
Email

Ms Gita Lingga
Media Officer
Tel. +6221 3913112 ext. 115
Mobile: +62815 884 5833
Email