Update from YouCanFreeUs

160 MILLION CHILDREN IN HAZARDOUS WORK

63 MILLION GIRLS AND 97 MILLION BOYS

There are shocking numbers of children around the world in child labour. International Labour Organization (ILO) and UNICEF recently released their numbers after its survey covering two-thirds of the world population of children between the ages of 5-17.

These statistics are usually produced by ILO every four years and are the basis of poverty alleviation programs, child health and literacy initiatives, and anti-modern slavery legislation and efforts by governmental agencies, international development agencies, and non-profits worldwide.

This data released by ILO shows that the world’s fight against child labour is stagnating, and the COVID pandemic will push some 8.9 million more children into child labour by 2022.

An International Cocoa Initiative assessed 263 Côte d’Ivoire communities and found a significant increase in child labour in the cocoa industry from July to September 2020 compared to July to September 2019. There was an increase in child labour in Ecuador of more than one-third since the beginning of the pandemic. Egyptian children are being used in cotton cultivation and other agricultural work. In Brazil, in the capital city of Sao Paulo alone, there has been a 26 percent increase in child labour between May and July of 2020.

So, What Can You Do?

  • Encourage responsive policy initiatives from your local and federal governments that will allocate more resources in child development.

  • Speak out on child labour in global supply chains, especially in the lower tier of supply chains.

  • Wealthy nations should provide assistance to poorer nations to offer relief from debt servicing, and debt-ridden countries should allocate these funds to child development initiatives.

  • Sponsor a child’s education through a reputable and accountable charity. It is proven that if a child is in school, their working risks are mitigated. Their health is monitored, and in poorer countries, they get meals at school. More importantly, the child is given an opportunity to receive an education and employable skills to break the shackles of poverty.

  • Become consumers of fair trade products, especially in the consumption of produce. The agricultural sector accounts for the largest share of child labour worldwide, almost 70%. Ethical, fair trade companies will ensure that children are not involved in farming or harvesting.

  • Stop children from being engaged in domestic work. Some 7.1 million children are in this category. Sadly, this is socially accepted in some countries, but it is cruel exploitation of children who deserve the right to education, health, and enjoying their childhood.

Without accelerated action, the world will not be able to eradicate child labour as envisioned in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Target 8.7

SDG Target 8.7:
Take immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking, and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including the recruitment and use of child soldiers, and by 2025 end child labour in all its forms.

Our Response at YouCanFreeUs

We have a staff team dedicated to rescuing and fighting forced child labour. Thank you to all of you who partner with us to give the children of the world a chance.