Covid 19 – Protect Children Now
Target 8.7 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals calls for an end to child labour in all its forms by 2025. It is estimated by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) that approximately one in ten of all children worldwide are currently in child labour. The ILO launched the World Day Against Child Labour in 2002 to focus attention on the global extent of child labour and the action and efforts needed to eliminate it. Child labour is work carried out to the detriment and endangerment of a child, in violation of international law and national legislation. It either deprives children of schooling or requires them to assume the dual burden of schooling and work. Child labour to be eliminated is a subset of children in employment.
The 2020 theme for the World Day Against Child Labour is Covid 19: Protect children from child labour now more than ever. The Covid-19 pandemic challenges us all but particularly the vulnerable. With limited food supplies, limited access to healthcare, social protection, education, and no family income; thousands of children from vulnerable backgrounds are at great risk of losing their lives, dropping out of school and entering child labour. This is true especially for girls.
In April 2020 when speaking about the impact of Covid 19 on children UN Secretary General, António Guterres, outlined four threats faced by the poorest and most vulnerable communities – limited or no access to food, education, health and safety. He stated:
” The poorest and most vulnerable members of society are being hardest hit, both by the pandemic and the response. I am especially concerned about the well-being of the world’s children….We must act now on each of these threats to our children. Leaders must do everything in their power to cushion the impact of the pandemic.”
So how can we eliminate child labour? One step might be to to only purchase chocolate produced using ethically sourced cocoa. It is estimated that there are 2.2 million child labour victims in the cocoa industry in West Africa. ACRATH encourages you to look for the following logos on chocolate wrappers.
This might seem like a very small step for you to take but together we can have a global impact.