C182 – Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention

Child Labour Convention

A weapon in the fight on child labour

There are people living under so difficult conditions that it makes it hard to make a living. Living like this gives them no other option than to let the children in the family contribute to the family. Some get a real work at a factory or something like that, others are made beggars. The children however they have to contribute loses their right to their childhood. Many children spend their days in fields or factories or at home taking care of siblings or food instead of going to school. All over the world organisations are fighting to get a hold of the problem. In extreme situations children can be forced into prostitution or be sold as labour. In 1999 the International Labour Organizations convention C182, Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention was approved. The convention is aiming to abolish the worst forms of child labour, slavery, prostitution, pornographic work and work consisting drugs. This convention is one of eight of the main conventions claimed by ILO and in 2014, 179 of the 183 member countries had ratified this convention.

What is child labour


In the year 2000 estimation was that about 245 million children was doing some kind of child labour. Today this number is supposed to have shrunk to about 168 million. Any work performed by a child between five and eleven is considered child labour according to UN and UNICEF definitions. Paid work for more than 14 hours a week for children between twelve and fourteen is to be seen as child labour. All work that can be harmful for children’s health, psychological evolvement, security or prevents them from attending school is to be seen as child labour as well. Children helping out at home is not to be seen as child labour unless it is more than 28 hours a week for a child in the ages between twelve and fifteen. A thirteen-year-old working on easier labours for a few hours a week in the family is not to be defined as child labour.


Subordinated and cheap labour


According to figures from as well UNICEF as ILO it shows that about 13 percent of children in the ages between five and fourteen are working. In the poorest parts of the world the numbers are as high as 24 percent. In areas counting as hazardous work there are more than 85 million of the children of the world that are being used. Here you find children in the ages between fifteen and seventeen. It is hard to reach exact numbers since these children often work in the streets or in the family. Besides theses facts many countries won´t admit that child labour exists in their country which leads to no statistics are found from these countries. Those who uses child labour, does it because they accept cheaper salaries and that they are more subordinated. Child labour also makes it possible to lower the salaries for the grownups.


Subordinated and cheap labour


According to figures from as well UNICEF as ILO it shows that about 13 percent of children in the ages between five and fourteen are working. In the poorest parts of the world the numbers are as high as 24 percent. In areas counting as hazardous work there are more than 85 million of the children of the world that are being used. Here you find children in the ages between fifteen and seventeen. It is hard to reach exact numbers since these children often work in the streets or in the family. Besides theses facts many countries won´t admit that child labour exists in their country which leads to no statistics are found from these countries. Those who uses child labour, does it because they accept cheaper salaries and that they are more subordinated. Child labour also makes it possible to lower the salaries for the grownups.

The fight on child labour


There are many organisations working actively against child labour. The biggest are UNICEF and ILO. They work together on big projects aiming to get children away from work and in to school. In the worst cases they create safer work with better conditions to get them away from the most dangerous works. You can see clearly how education can change the situation for these children in the long term. It is important to offer children in these countries free and mandatory school. To reach these goals they need conventions and laws to sanction the countries that aren´t following the conventions. Besides this there is a great need for information and campaigns showing that it exists and how unethical it is so that we can stop it together!

Child labour
Child labour