More than 9 million children worldwide could be pushed into child labor due to a pandemic: Report | India News
A simulation model shows that this number could rise to 46 million if children affected by Covid do not have access to Social protection coverage.
These findings are part of the report “Child Labor: Global Estimates 2020: Trends and the way forward” published before World Day Against Child Labor June 12.
The report prepared by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and UNICEF warns that progress to eradicate child labor stalled for the first time in 20 years, reversing the previous downward trend that saw child labor fall by 94 million between 2000 and 2016.
While it does not provide country-specific data, the press release on the report includes a note on the challenges facing India. According to the 2011 census, the total child population in India in the age group 5-14 years is 259.6 million with more than 10 million (4% of the total child population) working either as’ worker principal ‘or’ marginal worker ‘.
Census data indicate that the number of such children decreased in India by 2.6 million between 2001 and 2011. Data show a greater decline in rural areas than in urban areas. Increased migration from rural areas was seen as a result of the demand for child laborers in urban areas.
“… Covid-19 and subsequent economic difficulties are expected to increase the risk of child labor. The closure of 1.5 million schools due to the pandemic and closures in India has impacted 247 million children enrolled in primary and secondary schools and has increased the risk of them falling into child labor and unsafe migration. states in the statement.
Globally, the report points to a significant increase in the number of children, ages 5 to 11, in child labor. The number of children ages 5 to 17 doing hazardous work, defined as work that can harm their health, safety or morals, has increased by 6.5 million to 79 million since 2016.
It turns out that the agricultural sector represents 70% of children in child labor (112 million), followed by 20% in services (31.4 million) and 10% in industry (16.5 million).
The ILO and UNICEF called for adequate social protection for children, including universal benefits for children, increased spending on quality education and their return to school.
Expressing great concern about the increased vulnerability of children, Nobel Peace Prize Kailash satyarthi He said he was “distraught and embarrassed by the first increase in child labor in two decades.” “There can be no excuse for this. During the same 4 years before the pandemic, the world became rich by $ 10 trillion. However, child labor increased to 160 million. How rich must the world be to stop slavery? And the exploitation of our children? ”he said.
“On the eve of the G7 Summit, this appalling rise in child labor poses the greatest moral challenge to our world leaders. We cannot do business as usual. We need bold and urgent action. It is time we established a Global Protection Fund Social, with a direct focus on marginalized children. The pandemic will push millions more into child labor. We cannot let the world’s poorest children fend for themselves in this crisis. This World Day Against Child Labor is a call for Attention. We owe our children their fair share in financial resources, policies and social protection. Our children need us now more than ever. We must not leave them behind, “Satyarthi emphasized.