Hundreds of millions of boys and girls across the world are engaged in work that deprives them of adequate education, health, leisure and basic freedoms, violating their fundamental rights.
Of these children, more than half are exposed to the worst forms of child labour such as 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, which is observed on 12 June, was established by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in 2002, as a way to demand an end the devastating impact of child labour which affects 215 million children.
To mark this year’s World Day Against Child Labour, EI is launching a new publication in collaboration with the ILO’s International Programme for the Elimination of Child Labour, entitled ’Go for the Goal: End Child Labour’.
This publication emphasises the links between eliminating child labour and achieving the goal of quality education for all.
Deputy General Secretary of EI, Jan Eastman, said: “This joint EI-ILO IPEC publication underlines the role of teachers as key players in tackling child labour and keeping children in school. We know that children are more likely to attend school if the education on offer is relevant and learning occurs.
This requires professionally-trained and qualified teachers, relevant curricula, a healthy, safe and friendly school environment, with unfettered access to and from schools, especially in rural areas.” Using the overlap between the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa and World Day Against Child Labour as a welcome opportunity, EI has also co-edited a publication with the ILO-IPEC and FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association).
This manual, ‘Child Labour and the Right of Children to Play’, underlines how football can be used as a recreational activity, in order to inspire schools, workers’ and employers’ organisations, NGOs, local governments and civil society to help victims of child labour overcome the physical, psychological and emotional effects of what can be traumatic suffering.
EI encourages all its member organisations to mark the day, and to contribute to global efforts to end child labour, and promote education opportunities for all children.
For further information and materials, please visit EI's homepage: http://www.ei-ie.org/en/calendar/show.php?id=251&theme=childlabour