The ILO estimates that 215 million girls and boys work as child labourers in the world today. They work because the poverty of their family situation requires it, because adequate and affordable schooling is not available and because social norms deem it to be acceptable. At the same time, child labour persists not only because children supply their labour but also because plantations, farms, factories, businesses and households generate a demand for such labour. The successful elimination of child labour worldwide requires efforts to tackle simultaneously this complex set of supply and demand factors.
In the global fight against child labour, employers can and do play a fundamental role at different levels. At the workplace, they can refuse to hire children or, if child labour already occurs, they can remove the children making sure this is done in a responsible manner. In the case of adolescents, they can reduce the risk from hazards at the workplace. At the political level, employers and employers' organizations can lobby for effective training and education systems. They can also help raise public awareness and change attitudes towards child labour.
The Bureau for Employers' Activities has developed a set of guides for employers entitled "Eliminating Child Labour":
- The Guides are designed to help businesses and their organizations understand and take action against child labour. The three practical Guides provide ideas, advice and examples of prevention of child labour, the withdrawal of children from work and the protections of young workers from hazardous conditions.
- The package will be a key resource for executives, directors and managers of employers' organisations and other business associations that wish to engage on this important and sensitive issue.
- The Guides focus on developing countries and provide examples of enterprises and employers' organizations that have taken concrete action, either by themselves or in cooperation with the ILO, donors and other local, national and international organizations.
Eliminating Child Labour - Guides for Employers
Guide One: Introduction to the issue of child labour - (pdf 2,1 MB)
• French (pdf 848 KB)
• Indonesian (pdf 1,6 MB)
• Mongolian (pdf 24,08 MB)
• Russian (pdf 1,05 MB)
• Spanish (pdf 923 KB)
Guide Two: Enterprises - (pdf 3,2 MB)
• French (pdf 1,35 MB)
• Indonesian (pdf 2,0 MB)
• Mongolian (pdf 31,32 MB)
• Russian (pdf 2,72 MB)
• Spanish (pdf 1,42 MB)
Guide Three: Employers' Organizations - (pdf 2,0 MB)
• French (pdf 689 KB)
• Indonesian (pdf 1,1 MB)
• Mongolian (pdf 569 KB)
• Russian (pdf 995 KB)
• Spanish (pdf 688 KB)