Spotlight on combating child labour and forced labour

  1. The ILO and USDOL partnership to eliminate child labour and forced labour

    The ILO and the USDOL have been collaborating since 1995 to combat child labour and forced labour: more than 100 projects have been implemented and a wealth of information has been generated to guide policy efforts and raise awareness.

United States

The United States is a key partner of the ILO in promoting the Decent Work Agenda. The United States Government has ratified a number of ILO Conventions, including two fundamental Conventions on the Abolition of Forced Labour and on the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour, the governance Convention on Tripartite Consultation, as well as eleven technical Conventions. The United States holds one of the ten titular government seats of the ILO Governing Body permanently held by states of chief industrial importance.

The United States Government's contributions to the ILO

The United States funds the ILO through: 

  • Assessed contributions paid by all ILO Member States by virtue of their membership, which constitute the ILO’s core funding or regular budget. Between 2015 and 2018, the United States Government provided more than US$ 326.9 million
  • Voluntary, non-core funding contributions provided as earmarked funds for priority programmes and projects in addition to assessed contributions. Voluntary earmarked contributions from the United States Government to the ILO in the period 2015-2018 amounted to US$ 126.8 million.
The United States Government's contributions to the ILO, 2015-2018

The United States Government's support to ILO actions  

Strategic Partners within the U.S. Government 

The United States Government has provided consistently high-level political engagement and attaches strategic importance to the ILO’s ability in fulfilling its global mandate. The United States and the ILO have long shared common interests in strengthening competitiveness, extending democratic values worldwide, ensuring global peace and prosperity, and securing universal human rights through improvements in global living and working conditions.

The U.S. government works closely with the ILO primarily through the Department of Labor (USDOL), the Department of State (USDOS) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)

United States Department of Labor
The ILO works in close partnership with USDOL’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB), including the Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking (OCFT), the Office of Trade and Labor Affairs (OTLA) and the Office of International Relations (OIR).

ILAB's mission is to promote a fair global playing field for workers in the United States and around the world by enforcing trade commitments, strengthening labour standards, and combating international child labour, forced labour, and human trafficking. Learn more about USDOL OCFT's effort to eliminate the worst forms of child labor, forced labor, and human trafficking worldwide here. 

United States Department of State

USDOS leads US foreign policy through diplomacy, advocacy and assistance. USDOS is a valued and essential partner for the ILO, supporting programs that promote workers’ rights and combat human trafficking at the global, regional and country level. The ILO works closely with USDOS’s Bureau for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL), the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM), the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs and the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP).

United States Agency for International Development 
USAID leads the Government’s international development work through partnerships to reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance and help people emerge from humanitarian assistance. USAID’s Democracy, Human Rights and Governance Strategy focuses on the importance of human rights and its Global Labor Program builds the capacity of workers organizations and promotes human rights and justice for workers. As such, USAID’s partnership with the ILO contributes to projects on forced labour and human trafficking in Myanmar.