World Day Against Child Labour – 12 June

The World Day Against Child Labour

The World Day Against Child Labour observed every year June 12, is intended to foster the worldwide movement against child labour.

The World Day Against Child Labour is an International Labour Organization (ILO) sanctioned holiday first launched in 2002 aiming to raise awareness and activism to prevent child labour. It was spurred by ratifications of ILO Convention No. 138[1] on the minimum age for employment and ILO Convention No. 182[2] on the worst forms of child labour.

Social protection is both a human right and makes sound economic and social sense. Social protection enables access to education, health care and nutrition and plays a critical role in the fight against child labour. This year, World Day Against Child Labour draws attention to the role of social protection in keeping children out of child labour and removing them from it. In 2013, at the III Global Conference on Child Labour in Brasilia, the international community adopted the Brasilia Declaration, which stresses the need for decent work for adults, free, compulsory and quality education for all children, and social protection for all. Echoing those priorities, World Day 2014 calls for:

  • Action to introduce, improve and extend social protection, in line with the ILO Recommendation No. 202 on social protection floors.
  • National social security systems that are sensitive to children’s needs and help fighting child labour.
  • Social protection that reaches out to especially vulnerable groups of children.

The International Labour Organization (ILO), the United Nations body which regulates the world of work, launched the World Day Against Child Labour in 2002 in order to bring attention and join efforts to fight against child labour. This day brings together governments, local authorities, civil society and international, workers and employers organizations to point out the child labour problem and define the guidelines to help child labourers.

According to ILO’s data, hundreds of millions of girls and boys throughout the world are involved in work that deprives them from receiving adequate education, health, leisure and basic freedoms, violating this way their rights. Of these children, more than half are exposed to the worst forms of child labour. These worst forms of child labour include work in hazardous environments, slavery, or other forms of forced labour, illicit activities such as drug trafficking and prostitution, as well as involvement in armed conflict.

The World Day Against Child Labour provides an opportunity to gain further support of individual governments and local authorities, as well as that of the ILO social partners, civil society and others, in the campaign to tackle child labour.

Around the world, large numbers of children are engaged in paid or unpaid domestic work in the home of a third party or employer. These children can be particularly vulnerable to exploitation. Their work is often hidden from the public eye, they may be isolated, and they may be working far away from their family home. Stories of the abuse of children in domestic work are all too common.

World Day 2014 calls for:

  • Action to introduce, improve and extend social protection, in line with the ILO Recommendation No. 202 on social protection floors.
  • National social security systems that are sensitive to children’s needs and help fighting child labour.
  • Social protection that reaches out to especially vulnerable groups of children.

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